Surprise Wedding For Syrian Refugees in Saskatoon

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Surprise Wedding For Syrian Refugees in Saskatoon
Tue 08-12-2015

Mohammad Al Noury and Athar Farroukh got the wedding of their dreams far away from their home country.

A group of friends and strangers in Saskatoon, Canada came together to throw a surprise wedding party for a young Syrian couple. 

Ten days after Mohamad Al-Noury, 21, and Athar Farroukh, 23, were married in Syria they had to leave their country because of bombing. They spent time in refugee camps in Lebanon before coming to Saskatoon about a year ago as  refugees. Members of their immediate families are still overseas.

Athar Farroukh finally gets her wedding photos. The CBC's Eman Bare offered to take her photographs when she heard that Farroukh and her husband Mohamad Al-Noury had to flee Syria and had no opportunity to create pictures from their wedding. 

CBC News reporter Eman Bare met the couple while researching a story about refugee and mental health. 

"I started taking pictures of them towards the end [of our interview] for my story and the woman, Athar, said that, 'I never got to have wedding pictures.' I just started thinking, and I said, 'Well I have a camera. If you want tomorrow, I can take a couple wedding-type pictures for you.'"

Bare put a post on Facebook, mentioning that plan, and soon several individuals and businesses offered to throw a surprise party for the couple.

This cake was donated to the wedding reception for Mohamad Al-Noury and Athar Farroukh.


One woman donated a wedding dress for Farroukh and a suit for Al-Noury. Another made a wedding cake. The Delta Bessborough donated a banquet room for the reception.

Bare told the bride about the party just a few minutes before she entered the room. The couple had invited a few of their friends to the photo shoot. Combined with strangers who came to support them, about 50 people were at the reception. 

"We're blessed that we're in Saskatoon and we've seen a lot of great things and met a lot of great people and it's a dream come true for us," Farroukh said.

Al-Noury explained that they were high school sweethearts. He added the event was the first time he wore a suit.

"It's a very great feeling to share this with the people here," Farroukh said, adding he was was moved by the kindness of complete strangers. "Even though we don't know each other we were able to kind of pull together."

Source: CBC