Parichehr Salasel

Country of Origin:

Iran (Islamic Republic of)


Human Rights & Social Justice, Immigration, Human Rights & Social Justice, Adjusting to Life in Canada


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Toronto Newcomer Story


Hello everybody, my name is Parichehr. I have been in Canada almost for 6 years continuously. But I arrived in Canada in 2005 and actually (have been going back and forth). But from 6 years ago, continuously I am here. After we arrived in Canada (within) almost 6 months later, my husband got sick. He developed a brain tumour and after that I was very very busy with him. At the beginning of arriving in Canada we had another challenge on how to live, how to learn English, and it was a very big challenge for my family. I have two kids, one daughter and one son. At that time, they were studying at university in Iran, and then they wanted to continue studying their program here.

And my education was in medical healthcare. I was a family physician in my back home and I wanted to be a family physician here, but it was a very long process for me to achieve this goal. So my husband got sick and we went to the doctor and they prescribed him – he had to go to surgery very very emergency because the tumour in the brain was very large and affected a lot of the brain nerves. And the doctors told him if you don’t go to surgery you will be blind, you will be paralyzed and so and so. When he went to surgery, unfortunately after surgery he got meningitis and he went into a coma. And at that time they didn’t know how to deal with this situation. And besides this situation, the doctors wanted to pull his plug but I didn’t believe that his plug should be pulled plug because he was alive and he was responding to me through his eyes and something else. So the doctors told me that if you don’t want to pull the plug you have to go to court and bring a letter from the court. And so I went to the court in Toronto court and it was a very very stressful time for me. At that time, I got a lawyer and that was expensive, (it was) a lot of money for me. That I spent almost all of our savings that we brought from Iran. And then after a few months, the court, my lawyer Vaughan and the doctors didn’t have to pull his plug. Again they appealed after a few months and then during this time he got better and he opened his eyes, and fortunately my effort was very successful at that time. But the doctors again insisted on their decision and then they sent us to the Ontario court, and then fortunately after Ontario court a few months later again my lawyer won and during this time I had a very very stressful and challenging with my living with my kids, with my education and anything. I didn’t know how to speak English well at that time. So after almost one year he got a little bit better but he couldn’t speak, he couldn’t walk. He was like bedridden. Again the doctors appealed to Ontario court, and then again we went to Supreme Court in Ottawa. After almost 3 years. During this time, my effort was to be living with my kids in a safe and very calm situation. And then, fortunately again the Supreme Court - we won in Supreme Court and then on my husband’s name. Right now there is a law (passed) in all of the Canada that the doctors don’t have to pull the plug until the family of the patient gives them consent. My husband’s name is Hassan Rasouli, if you want you can go through website, google his name and you can understand his (entire) story in this three years.

I wanted to let you know, that please do not be upset in any situation. You have to fight with everything you have, to be hopeful during your life in Canada. I am very happy to be living in Canada as here it is humanitarianism is the first thing and freedom and I am very very happy to be here. And right now thanks God that my husband is alive, my kids – my daughter graduated from University of Waterloo in Urban Planning and she is right now working in a good company. And she got married also during these years, and I helped her to get married and to have a good life. And also my son (had) a very very hard time going through his life. But I encouraged him all the time – please go to the school, finish your program and (start) your new life in Canada. Unfortunately he has a lot of ups and downs, but now he is a student of Ryerson University in electrical engineering and right now thank God he is good. But the most important thing for me is that my husband he is alive. But he still needs help because after that surgery and a long journey for him but he can still see us, he can communicate with us and every day I can see him and communicate with him.

Right now I wanted to let you know, all of the newcomers to be very happy to be in Canada. Canada for me has a lot of things (that) challenged me during this almost 6 years. (However in anything) like health care, education, living, cultural –

for me multicultural in here is very very interesting. Living together with a lot of idea and different culture from different places of the world it’s very very interesting. And they are living together very peacefully. For me here, I learned a lot during these 6 years. I learned that we have to keep going forward and to be very hopeful. There is a lot of organizations, community to get ideas from, to learn a lot from in any program. That thanks God that I can go and learn a lot of things for living better in the future. Personally I am very helpful to all of the people that need help in any situation, and that’s why I am here. When this organization Historica Canada invited me to come here and share my story to all of the new immigrants, it was very interesting for me to share my story to all of the newcomers – that don’t be upset and everyday be hopeful and there are a lot of ways to be successful here in Canada. A lot of opportunity to be successful and to learn a lot. You can go and get help from the community that the government helped to provide this program for free for every new immigrant. These are very good, places and environments to learn how to live peacefully, how to live successfully and so and so. Now I graduated from college in ECE and another program named health care provider, and right now I have a little bit of free time from other things and I can go through my program. To go work, I applied for jobs and I wanted to go to work and to be helpful for all of the people. Thank you very much for listening to my story