In May 2016, Bassel Mcleash immigrated to Canada fleeing the ongoing civil war in his home country of Syria. Born and raised in Damascus, Bassel studied at the High Institute of Dramatic Arts in Damascus, and became actively involved in the local arts industry. Bassel is a passionate advocate of the LGBTQ+
community and has been dedicated to the pursuit of LGBTQ+ rights, even during his time in Syria and Egypt.
Bassel has often been forced to rely on the kindness of friends and strangers to survive. On May 26th, 2016, Bassel became the first of several Syrian refugees sponsored by Rainbow Railroad, a Toronto based organization dedicated to helping LGBTQ+ people targeted by state sponsored violence, to find safety in a new country.