Surrey: Minister Bruce Ralston was on hand at the Community Campus of DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society to announce the provincial government’s increased investments to expand settlement services for newcomers. “This is a major step forward in delivering more and better opportunities for newcomers, while helping our province benefit from the skills they bring with them,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology. “Too often, people immigrating to our province haven’t been able to leverage their knowledge and experience into productive employment. The steps we’re taking will remove barriers to opportunities by expanding credential recognition supports, language training and other services, helping make their lives better and more fulfilling.”
Increased funding for both the BC Settlement & Integration Services (BCSIS) and Career Paths for Skilled Immigrants Program were announced. BCSIS provides information, support, resources and referrals to help temporary residents in pursuing pathways to permanent residency, thrive in today’s labour market, and establish connections in the workplace and in the community.
“I came from Colombia in 2017 on a student and work visa, arriving with a limited understanding of the B.C. workplace,” said David Purzycki, DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society program participant. “Thanks to the staff at DIVERSEcity, I now have a great resumé and the tools and skills to begin my job search.”
“As the very first immigrant serving organization in the Fraser Valley, DIVERSEcity has had a long history in assisting new Canadians from all walks of life settle into their new communities in the Fraser Valley. With a large proportion of newcomers that arrive to Canada fitting an economically desirable age category, this bodes well for our economy but only if we provide the necessary community supports, training and pathways to employment to ensure that our newest Canadians become hardworking contributors to Canadian society” said Neelam Sahota, CEO, DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society.
Services offered through BCSIS and Career Paths for Skilled Immigrants help make immigration work better for the individual, their families and the province. The B.C. government’s investment represents more than $11 million in settlement and skills training initiatives to help improve the lives of new British Columbians.