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Mohamad Fakih, Paramount Fine Foods CEO, On Why Refugees And Bettering Canada Go Hand In Hand

04/04/2017 01:54 EDT | Updated 04/04/2017 03:58 EDT

Paramount Fine Foods CEO Mohamad Fakih knows how to serve up traditional Middle Eastern food. But he's also using his restaurant chain to shape a better Canada.

"We help [the] Canadian community at large. We help, we hire all Canadians regardless of where they come from and that is what we’re proud of," explains Fakih.

In 2016, the company had over 1,200 job opportunities. When the first wave of Syrian refugees entered Canada in 2016, he committed to hiring refugees across each of his 36 Canadian locations. So far, he has 80 working in his restaurants.

mohamad fakih Mohamad Fakih poses in one of his Toronto-based Middle Eastern restaurant chains. (Melissa Renwick/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

After the deadly shooting at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec City in January, Fakih offered to cover the funeral costs for all six of the victims' families.

The company later raised over $100,000 for the families, and for the rebuilding of the mosque.

The Lebanese-born CEO says helping people is part of the company's DNA. When Fakih immigrated to Canada in 2000, he had very little experience running a business.

When he took over Paramount in 2007 as CEO, he vowed he would give back to the community that helped him.

mohamed fakih paramount fine foods ceo Mohamed Fakih as a child before immigrating to Canada in 2000.

"When I came here as an immigrant, I really was helped by a lot of Canadians ... and if you one day — and I did — became successful, this is the time you want to give back," said Fakih.

HuffPost Canada sat down with the CEO on the inspirational way he continues to help Canadians. Watch the video above.

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