|Find us on Facebook Subscribe to our newsletter|
Mobilizing Waterloo Region around immigrant employment
Waterloo Region's vibrant economy and high quality of life makes it a popular destination for many new immigrants. Despite the optimism of building a future in Canada, many immigrants with a wide range of skill and professional training are denied the opportunity to practice their profession.
Even though skill shortages exist in many of their chosen professions, the current climate creates a confusing and discouraging process for immigrants with skills and training from other countries. The process most often leads to rejection.
Over 350 people and organizations in Waterloo Region participated in a community-wide effort, with funding coming from 25 separate funding groups including three levels of government.
Complex challenges like immigrant employment require diverse solutions, with many different segments of a community working together in new ways. CCBR responded to the challenge with a strategy that included four specific stages. These stages built on CCBR's previous work on immigrant employment.
Our region's strategy for immigrant employment is not simply establishing a network but embarking on an evolving journey that involves the whole community. Diverse stakeholders are involved in strategically planning next steps. Each success builds momentum and creates visibility for this issue that will lead to further change. Strong facilitation is needed to forge a common purpose that serves to inspire all to commit their time and resources. Communities across Canada have expressed an interest in Waterloo Region's model of responding to immigrant employment.
-written by Rich Janzen and Rob Case
Formerly Centre for Research and Education in Human Services (CREHS)