Thuraya and her family made the move to Ottawa from Jordan just over a year ago in search of a better life. Her first priority was to find a job, but she ran into the same roadblock experienced by many people – the difficulty of finding work without Canadian experience. Thuraya met with a counsellor at a local community association and when she talked about her passion for cooking she was referred to The Ottawa Mission’s Food Services Training Program (FSTP). She applied, was accepted, and so began her new life!
Thuraya says she learned many new practical skills working in The Mission’s industrial-sized kitchen for five months – from knife skills to proper food handling. But over and above this, the people at The Mission who run the program – Chef Ric and his crew – were very understanding. “They really want you to learn and succeed, and they were very patient and took the time to make sure that I got the help I needed.”
Thuraya graduated from the FSTP this past December and by then she already had a job!
On top of this, she’s working with staff at The Mission’s Stepping Stones Learning Centre to obtain her High School diploma, and she plans to continue her culinary training at the college level.
Thuraya says, “I would like to thank everyone at The Mission and all the people who support this wonderful program! It’s made a big difference in my life, and my family and I are very grateful.”