Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC): Reminds you of your responsibilities to ensure that all personnel employed by or volunteering with you to deliver our programs should be fully screened in accordance with applicable policies, laws and regulations including, where necessary, criminal record checks. This is particularly applicable where your staff or volunteers are dealing with vulnerable populations.
Please find below additional information regarding criminal record checks and the screening of volunteers on the RCMP and Volunteer Canada websites:

IRCC understand this to be a very busy and strenuous time for all Service Providers partnering with IRCC to deliver our Settlement and Resettlement programs and many of you are dealing with an overwhelming outpouring of volunteers.

Posted: 05/06/2016 - 10:20

Syrian refugees are beginning to settle in Canada with the help of organizations like COSTI Immigration Services, funded by the Government of Canada.
Reception centres provide refugees with access to health and counselling services, and orientation sessions that prepare them to find new jobs.
Children can attend the art therapy sessions to help them cope with post-traumatic stress.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, Resettling to Canada: Welcoming Syrian Refugees video.

Posted: 05/04/2016 - 12:04

The Syrian Refugee Medical Assessment Translation Tool is available for free to health care providers for mental health screening. It was developed to help reduce language barriers between Syrian refugees and healthcare providers.
These free, secure online tools have been developed to allow patients to complete a full history and mental health screening in Arabic or Armenian, with the results automatically translated to English for healthcare providers to review and add to the patient record.
Collecting this information in the patient’s first language can help ensure a more complete and accurate history is collected, including concerns around sensitive issues such as mental health.
For more information please visit the website

Posted: 05/03/2016 - 15:28

This summer, the Ontario Camps Association (OCA) is proud to offer 350 free spots to refugee children in Canadian summer camps across the country. Accredited Camps are providing hundreds of free spaces at their camps for children ages 4-15 who have come to Canada as refugees in the last three years.
Thanks to the generous donations from Accredited Camps across Ontario, we are offering free spots to a variety of camps, including:

  • Day or overnight camps
  • Specialty camps
  • Religious or non-religious camps
  • All boy, all girl, or co-ed camps
  • One week or multi-week camps

Agencies, Organizations, Sponsors and Families must first complete an application form for the family.
For more information or to apply please click here

Posted: 04/27/2016 - 14:59

Ryerson University, Lifeline Syria Challenge (RULSC) invites newcomer Syrians to a free financial literacy workshop (in Arabic).
 This workshop will be the second (out of 5) of our financial literacy series. This workshop will introduce participants to banking in Canada.
Topics include:

  • Banking
  • Banks vs. Credit Unions
  • Chequing vs. Saving Account
  • Saving for the Future
  • Mobile Banking Applications
  • Opening Bank Account
  • Fees and Service Charges
  • Newcomer Banking Packages

You can read more and register for this event on Eventbrite

Posted: 04/26/2016 - 12:14

The OttawaCitizen - When Syrian refugees began arriving by the planeload in Ottawa around Christmas time, many wondered where they would all live in a city with a severe shortage of affordable housing. But in a development that has surprised even settlement workers, all the government-sponsored refugees 1,112 of them have already found permanent housing.

Posted: 04/22/2016 - 10:10

Refugee families need lots of "starter kit" items for their homes.
Many refugee families have just moved into or will be moving into homes in Waterloo Region in the coming months. There is a new effort to better coordinate donations and gather items that we know are of immediate need.  “Starter kits” should be made up in quantities appropriate for four people.
For details on the contents of different starter kits please click here

Posted: 04/18/2016 - 15:15

Ryerson University, Lifeline Syria Challenge (RULSC) invites newcomer Syrians to a free financial literacy workshop (in Arabic).
This workshop will introduce participants to the Canadian financial system.
Topics include:

  • Canadian money
  • Average costs of living in Toronto
  • What is a Budget

You can read more and register for this event on Eventbrite

Posted: 04/06/2016 - 09:58

The Torontoist site shares suggestions of how the public can help Syrian refugees beyond donating money.

"There’s no shortage of love for Syrian refugees in Toronto, but knowing how to channel that desire to help can be tricky. It becomes especially confusing when you want to offer support and don’t have a wealth of disposable income. To help you navigate the vast refugee support network, we’ve compiled some ways to pitch in that don’t involve opening up your wallet."

Posted: 04/01/2016 - 15:49

The CIVICYork Region Online Immigrant Support Directory provides reliable, online information, for 600+ York Region settlement, immigrant, ethno-cultural, and integration services - organized and sorted for easy retrieval, available 24/7, with Google Translate - for both community residents and service providers.

Posted: 03/18/2016 - 14:34