Guelph, Ont. businessman receives Order of Canada for sponsoring Syrian refugees

On Thursday, Guelph businessman Jim Estill received the Order of Canada for his sponsorship of 61 Syrian refugee families.

A prominent Guelph, Ont. businessman was among a group of 40 invested into the Order of Canada during a ceremony on Thursday at Rideau Hall in Ottawa.

CEO and owner of Danby Appliances, Jim Estill, was recognized by Governor General Julie Payette for his work in bringing hundreds of Syrian refugees to the Guelph area.

READ MORE: Guelph executive recognized for work with Syrian refugees

Since 2016, he has sponsored the settlement of 61 families at a cost of about $1.5 million.

Estill has also helped arrange employment along with language and career counselling with the help of hundreds of volunteers.

He’s even given jobs at Danby Appliances to refugees.

Estill has also assisted a nine-year-old Guelph boy in sponsoring a Syrian family in Canada.

For his efforts, Estill received the Order of Ontario in 2017 and an Everyday Heroes Award from the Global Hope Coalition.

READ MORE: Refugee chocolatier announces plans to ‘give back’ to Canada, hire 50 refugees by 2022

Estill was also recognized on Thursday for his ongoing “contributions to the Guelph and Waterloo technology communities.”

He started a computer distribution business from the trunk of his car while studying engineering at the University of Waterloo and grew it into a company worth $2 billion.

The Order of Canada was created in 1967 and is one of the country’s highest civilian honours

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