Bringing peace to the world, one chocolate at a time

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Peace is such a peaceable phrase.

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It is also extremely deep. As is the story of the Hadhad household, grasp chocolatiers who as soon as ran one of the crucial profitable chocolate companies within the Center East and Europe from their house nation of Damascus, Syria, however have had been pressured to flee in 2012 after their manufacturing unit was destroyed in a bomb assault. who additionally destroyed the one world they’d ever identified.

The Hadhads discovered themselves refugees in Lebanon, and the one factor of actual worth they took with them once they left their house had been the recipes for his or her award-winning candies. For 3 years, the united household mourned for what they as soon as had as they lived in a refugee camp with little hope of returning to regular life, not to mention placing down roots elsewhere.

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Tareq Hadhad – handout
Tareq Hadhad – handout supplied

It was round this time that Tareq Hadhad, the son and eldest brother of the household, started making use of to nation after nation, about 14 in all, seeking secure passage. And each door was closed on the request of his household.

Besides one: Canada.

On a freezing winter evening, Tareq landed in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, greeted by a gaggle of strangers, fortunately waving Canadian flags, welcoming indicators and hugs of peace.

“And do you assume the indicators had been in each Arabic and English?” Tareq stated in a current cellphone interview, his voice nonetheless marveling on the welcome he had acquired. “For 3 years we discovered ourselves as refugees with little alternative or hope…when our household was invited to Canada, we had no concept what our life can be like. Canada was a dream come true – the nation made our desires come true.

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Tareq Hadhad lives in winter - document
Tareq Hadhad lives in winter – doc supplied

“I can let you know it is a love story between my household and Canada.”

In an enormous approach. Tareq was the primary to reach, because of a scholarship and a personal sponsorship program – and he was the primary to expertise the standard Canadian winter. “The chilly was surprising however in a great way! He did not take lengthy to adapt and helped me to combine.

“Additionally, winter brings folks collectively.”

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Tareq says that amongst many different firsts he skilled was “the kindness and compassion of people that opened their hearts and houses to make us really feel welcome”. As soon as the remainder of his household arrived, together with patriarch Issam Hadhad, the top chocolatier, Tareq got down to rebuild the enterprise and put down roots in a brand new nation.

Greater than that, with the assist of the brand new household neighborhood of Antigonish, if not all Nova Scotians, “we rebuilt our chocolate enterprise and began doing what we cherished most: making chocolate” .

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The Hadhad family at the inauguration of the new chocolate factory – supplied
The Hadhad household on the inauguration of the brand new chocolate manufacturing unit – provided Picture by Peace By Chocolate /chocolate peace

Chocolate with a strong message – the corporate, formally named Peace By Chocolate, ( was based in early 2016, with the well-known treats first being bought at native farmers’ markets earlier than demand soared. results in the development of a brand new manufacturing unit to maintain tempo. orders. The corporate has grown – and continues to develop with new, further staff and new varieties. Demand has grown to embody the globe – and into the stratosphere as Peace by Chocolate has even traveled to area to be loved on the Worldwide Area Station.

Many world leaders have acquired the candies, and Tareq, CEO of the corporate in addition to a board member of Make investments Nova Scotia and considered one of Nova Scotia’s most well-known philanthropists, is in excessive demand. as keynote speaker to speak about his experiences.

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Moreover, a part of the corporate’s mandate is to offer again, and a portion of chocolate gross sales go to the Peace on Earth Society, a Nova Scotia-registered group that donates to peacebuilding tasks on the planet.

The quantity of donations the Hadhad household have made since arriving on Canadian shores is unprecedented – a e book on the household’s life is now out there. And their story is now advised by way of movie, chocolate peacedirected by Jonathan Keijser, a movie that strikes a chord because it particulars the rise of the homesick refugee household to proudly embrace their new lives as Canadians dwelling in Canada.

Peace by Chocolate book cover – supplied
Peace by Chocolate e book cowl – provided Picture supplied

How trustworthy was the movie to the household’s story? “It is not a documentary, however the inspiration was taken from what occurred to us once we arrived in Canada,” Tarek stated. “The movie is an amalgamation of a number of refugee tales in addition to my family’s journey.”

Tareq, who turned a Canadian citizen together with his household just a few years in the past, stated “60% of the movie is true, however drama was included to offer perspective to the story, in addition to to inform the story extra vary of recent immigrants to a brand new nation.”

Peace by Chocolate movie – provided
Peace by Chocolate film – supplied Picture supplied /chocolate peace

Did he ever assume his life would end up like this? “After we began promoting our candies at farmers’ markets, we had no concept what it might be like. Now our candies are all around the world, sharing the stage with among the strongest folks on the planet.

“It’s past our dream. Now we have Canada to thank.

(The movie is obtainable now and celebrated on the Oakville Movie and Artwork Festivals

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