Funding announced to help immigrants integrate

Births and immigration in Canada from 1850 to 2000Image via WikipediaThe province is partnering with Ottawa and the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC) on a new initiative to better prepare immigrants from China and the Philippines for life in Canada.
The new program was announced early today by Premier Greg Selinger, who is travelling in China, and federal Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney.
Selinger said in an telephone interview Tuesday the new immigration program will better prepare immigrants for not only what to expect when they first arrive, but to channel them into jobs sooner.
"We have an obligation to prepare them for success," Selinger said. "They're coming because Canada has a good reputation in China. It's a safe place to live and they feel they're going to be welcomed."
Many families also come to Canada to see their children get a solid education in our country's universities and colleges, he added.
The pilot program will provide Manitoba nominees in China and the Philippines with pre-arrival settlement orientation and labour-market preparation services. These services will include the development of a career plan based on Manitoba-specific labour-market information and guidance on qualifications recognition procedures. It will then be adapted for provincial nominees destined to other provincial jurisdictions as well as for Manitoba nominees in other parts of the world.
These new services for provincial nominees will be delivered through Phase 2 of the Canadian Immigrant Integration Program (CIIP), funded through a $15-million contribution agreement from Citizenship and Immigration Canada.
"Pre-arrival services are an essential part of our strategy to help newcomers succeed. ACCC's partnership with Manitoba to create province-specific CIIP information and services is an important step in our commitment to prepare immigrants before they arrive in Canada," said Kenney. "This pilot demonstrates our aim to meet specific needs of newcomers destined for provinces across the country."
"ACCC members play a vital role in the economic integration of newcomers in Canada," said James Knight, president and CEO of ACCC. "Through ACCC's overseas offices, they are also providing pre-arrival advice to federal skilled workers in their country of origin. Red River College has been delivering this service for three years and is now working with ACCC and the Manitoba government to develop overseas pre-arrival services for provincial nominees."
Before arriving in Canada, nominees will also have access to Manitoba's successful English online language program, which provides language training using Manitoba specific scenarios. Students will be able to interact with adult English-as-an-additional-language teachers based in Manitoba, who will provide one-on-one guidance throughout the student's training.
The initiative will begin in November with approximately 40 Manitoba nominees. CIIP services for provincial nominees will be available at all CIIP locations in the coming year.
Selinger is in China to also drum up more business for the CentrePort development at Winnipeg's airport and to lure more tourists to the province.

Source: Winnipeg Free Press
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