CANADA PROVIDES FREE SETTLEMENT SERVICES
Canada Immigration   Sep 11 2021
As per a recent government survey, about a quarter of immigrants who know about settlement services do not know about accessing them. Canada’s government-funded settlement services prove to have helped most of the newcomers they have served so far. Yet, the majority still don’t know how to benefit from them.
Before their arrival, immigrants could use the settlement services of the Ministry of Immigration, Francisation and Integration (MIFI), specifically for Quebec, and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
As per the Settlement Outcomes Report from IRCC, these services are very much helpful. This report gathered information from Newcomer Outcomes Surveys, 2018 and 2019. 55,370 of 120,897 total newcomers surveyed were settlement program clients, and 65,527 people surveyed were non-clients.
Among those who got the services, almost all found them helpful, while the majority somewhat acknowledged that these services supported them on their journey to settle in Canada permanently.
A component of this achievement of settlement services is timing. Pre-arrival services will not be of much use to someone who has already arrived in Canada. Approximately 70 % of the surveyed people who didn’t get any settlement services said they were unaware of them. Also, amongst people who were aware, almost 25% declared they didn’t know how to use them.
Federally-funded referral services had connected with most of those people who described facing no trouble in accessing services. Roughly 23 % of newcomers reported using them in the first year, and most received the guidance they required.
How to avail settlement services before immigrating to Canada
The settlement services funded by various government levels could assist you even before you enter Canada. On its website, IRCC has listed roughly 1,259 such services on their website. However, these are not for people coming temporarily. These are pre-arrival services meant for approved permanent residents outside of Canada.
At the federal level, IRCC extends support to assist you in preparing to reside in Canada. Before the pandemic, people looking to immigrate from China, India, and the Philippines could receive In-person services. However, most have now reportedly moved online. These services assist you in obtaining details regarding life in Canada, like housing, transportation and healthcare. As per your requirements, they could even refer you for more precise community services.
IRCC even provides a list of services to support you gain employment in Canada. These can assist you in writing a resume, getting a job in Canada, and having your credentials recognised. Specific industry-based resources for engineering, tech, architecture, finance, trades, construction, nursing, etc., are also available.
Tool for finding settlement services in Canada
On IRCC’s website, newcomers can use a tool that assists with services that address their particular requirements. It excludes Quebec settlement services because Quebec has its immigration system and resources like a settlement service search tool in French. However, it does provide a province-specific page listing settlement resources for those looking to settle in Quebec.
What settlement services does Canada provide?
There are six categories of services. Support Services like child care, translation, and transportation are indispensable to those who face barriers to accessing IRCC Settlement Programs. Some people are likely to be unable to get the most of settlement services without these support services.
Needs Assessments aid immigrants to know which services they require for supporting their settlement journey and how to get them. Only about 23 % of clients make some use of them. As per the IRCC report, where more immigrants use them, they get better connected to services. The report said It gives IRCC a more comprehensive understanding of their needs.
Information Services give information that aids the IRCC clients to settle. Many of the settlement service clients describe that they obtain information from their friends. The second most important source of information is through the settlement service providers. The Internet was the most significant source of information for non-clients. However, it was the least-used source for clients.
Language Training provides immigrants with the means to acquire language skills. IRCC allocates the largest share of its budget for language training. It is a central focus for the success of immigrants in Canada. Not only does it benefit immigrants to get jobs and connect with locals. Also, you need at least some fluency in French or English to be eligible for citizenship,
Employment Services support immigrants to prepare to work in Canada. Some of the long-term and short-term services are mentorship, networking opportunities, work placements, licensure and certification preparation, job search skills and matching services, as well as employment counselling. Approximately 78 % of users said these services assisted them in preparing for the Canadian labour market. However, among clients, employment services had the least uptake rate among any of the settlement services.
Community Services support immigrants to meet friends and become involved in local activities. Community services were the second least used, after employment services, among all programs. Nearly 60 % of those who did use them reported they met their close friends through community organisations. Both clients of IRCC settlement services and non-clients reported almost equal participation rates in community activities. Among the different activities were the most common were religious activities. After that came school or civic, cultural, and sports and recreation at the end.
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