October 12, 2016 10:44 pm
Updated: October 13, 2016 12:47 pm

Nova Scotia immigrants give back to the province they call home

WATCH: Two Nova Scotia businessmen are donating funds to help fund research by Dalhousie medical students.


There’s a saying, “home is where the heart is”, and for Canadian immigrants, Hossein Mousavi and Taleb Abidali, that adage rings true when it comes to how they feel about Nova Scotia.

The business partners both immigrated to Canada from the Middle East in the 1980s.

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Abidali remembers the struggles of not being able to communicate with his new community.

“I didn’t speak any English when I first came to Canada, I only knew a few words so it was a struggle but I always wanted to find a way to pursue my dreams,” Abidali said.

Abidali was a physical education teacher before joining the construction industry full time with Mousavi.

Today, they own a home building company named Cresco and are exercising their philanthropic passion by donating $200,000 to the Research in Medicine program at Dalhousie.

“This program is unique at the medical school because it’s the only one of its kind in Canada and every student benefits from this program because it’s embedded in the curriculum,” Brian Thompson, the CEO of the Dalhousie Medical Research Foundation, said.

RIM gives every medical student the opportunity to pursue a research project of their choice where they get partnered up with mentors and are provided with a $5,000 stipend to complete their work.

Cresco’s donation will be used to give towards the research projects of 10 students per year over the next four years.

“There’s lots of creative and smart students and if you help them pursue their dreams or fund their research then they can do lots for future generations,” Mousavi said.

The men say its their way of giving back to the province that helped them get on their feet.

“We are proud to be Canadian and we are proud to give back some of what this land gave us,” Abidali said.

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