What must it be like to move to a new country? To relocate your entire life or lives in the case that your entire family is coming with you? To have to start over, learn a new language and navigate an entirely new governmental system, not to mention an unknown society and culture? The documentary short, A Place to Call Home, offers us a gracious glimpse into the lives of new Canadians who have made the Bay of Quinte region their home, following the lives of students from the Loyola School of Adult and Continuing Education’s ESL program from their first days of class to their culminating Celebration of Achievement event.

Filmed by the talented local filmmakers behind Fifth Town Films, Tess Girard and Ryan J. Noth, A Place to Call Home premiered at Belleville Downtown DocFest in March 2020, where it won the Best Local Film Award. It has since been recognized in 2021 with an Economic Developers Council of Ontario Award of Excellence and an Economic Developers Association of Canada Marketing Canada Award.  


MEET SOME OF THE PEOPLE WHO HAVE MADE THE BAY OF QUINTE
A PLACE TO CALL HOME

EMEBET BELETE

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Originally from Ethiopia, Emebet has lived in Canada for 23 years, seven of them here in the Bay of Quinte region. She is a studio artist and art educator. She has worked on some very impressive art installations around the world and has big plans for the BoQ.

We asked Emebet what she loves best about living here in the region and this is what she had to say:

"I love the natural setting of my living area, as it is quiet. I look out my back window and I am able to see and enjoy nature."
— Emebet

MARK PHILLIPS

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Having come to Canada 41 years ago, Mark has lived in the Bay of Quinte region for almost 17 years. He is the owner of Mystical Distributing Company, Canada’s largest fireworks importer and distributor. He ended up here by fluke while aiming for Mississauga.

We asked Mark what he loves best about living in the region and this is what he had to say:

“I love the people here and the easy access to everything.” — Mark

KENNY TOOR

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A native of India, Kenny has lived in Canada for three and a half years, and came to the Bay of Quinte region almost three years ago. He is the CEO and chairman of Toor Group and owner of Motel 6 in Quinte West. He moved here for both business and pleasure.

We asked Kenny what he loves best about living in the region and this is what he had to say:

“If I had to choose one thing I love about the area, it would be the people.” — Kenny

DR. NEGAR CHOOBACK MD FRCPC

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Dr. Chooback is originally from Iran and has lived in Canada for 24 years. She came to the Bay of Quinte region three years ago to work with two of the doctors she trained with in Kingston.

We asked Dr. Chooback what she loves best about living in the region and this is what she had to say:

“My favourite thing about living here is my patients. Of all the places I have practiced, this is my favourite place to be a doctor.” — Negar

TANUSRI PARDESHI

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Tanusri came to the region from India two years ago to study at Loyalist College. After graduating from the Public Relations and Event Management program she decided to stay in the region and we’ve been delighted to work with her on different BoQ projects.

We asked her what she loves best about living in the region and this is what she had to say:

 “I have added some amazing people to my close circle in the past 12 months and I also happened to find my partner, who is a longtime resident of the Quinte region, in Belleville. This makes the city even more special to me.” —Tanusri

ASH MURRELL

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This is Ash Murrell. He is a professional photographer who came to Canada from the UK 18 years ago. He moved to the Bay of Quinte region with his family, and planned to move to the city shortly after but decided to stay put.

When asked Ash what he loves about living here and this is what he had to say:

Living in this region is really a perfect balance between work and play. The surroundings naturally inspire the creative side of me.”
— Ash

ALAIN KECHICHIAN

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Alain is an optician and the owner of Essenzia Eyewear Essentials in Belleville's Downtown District. He has lived in Canada for almost 30 years, over 20 of them here in the Bay of Quinte. He came here for work and met the love of his life :).

When asked what he loves about living here in the region and this is what he had to say:

“I love [the] people. They have taken me in just like family!! My wife and I have been blessed with the level of support this community has shown us over the years with our business.” — Alain

APARNA MEHRA NARULA

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Aparna moved to the Bay of Quinte region from India a year and a half ago after getting married to join her husband who is posted at CFB Trenton. She is a Henna Mehndi Tattoo expert and we have experienced her craft first-hand... literally.

When asked what she loves about living here in the region and this is what she had to say:

“It’s a small county, very peaceful and quiet. But most importantly, I live with my husband, and I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else but with him.” — Aparna

DR. JINNI DEMINE

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Dr. Jinni is from Russia and came to Canada 23 years ago to start her veterinary practice and raise her family. She has been in the region for 18 years working hard to heal our pets at the Trenton Veterinary Hospital.

When asked what she loves about living here in the region, this is what she had to say:

“Sense of community, the support of the community and raising my family in an active, healthy community.” — Dr. Jinni

BLAS VILLAGOMEZ

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Blas is from Bolivia and came to Canada four years ago because his wife is Canadian. He is a wonderful visual artist and illustrator who creates optically impressive images in his home studio.

When asked Blas what he loves about living here in the region and this is what he had to say:

“People [here are] so kind and helpful! Canadian culture is amazing!” — Blas

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