Making Canada Home
Delivered across the greater Toronto area, our Settlement Services provide some of the most comprehensive services to individuals and families that focus on several stages of the newcomer journey. From pre-arrival support to counselling, language and employment help and more, COSTI is helping thousands adjust to their new lives in Canada. Permanent residents, foreign-born Canadian citizens, government-sponsored refugees, refugee claimants and others in need continued to reach out to us for help.
In 2021/22, our North York and Corvetti Education Centres, Vaughan Employment Services and Vaughan Welcome Centre locations, continued to provide highly sought-after assistance, some of which included finding housing, securing permanent resident cards, obtaining work and study permits, sponsoring family members, and helping clients navigate and access the various streams of government assistance programs.
Our Settlement Services staff witness the key challenges their clients face first-hand. Many of their issues are primarily centred around language barriers, and a lack of access to information. This is why COSTI continues to offer orientation sessions and workshops to help newcomers understand and adapt to Canadian culture. Additional key components to some of the sessions include learning about Canada’s legal system, how to access community and government resources, offering one-on-one counselling to help clients cope with the challenges they facing in their newly adopted home – from culture shock and language barriers to understanding how to get on the right path to gainful employment.
Many who arrived over the last year have had the added pressure of dealing with financial and COVID-19 related challenges. While online services proved effective and efficient for many, many more cannot afford or do not have access to computers. This is why the many educational and training sessions provided through our settlement services are important. Last year alone, COSTI staff delivered 12,969 one-on-one services to 3,846 clients.
Much of our success is thanks to our strong and versatile network of community partners and key stakeholders. Together, we are helping individuals and families make informed decisions about their settlement and integration experiences in Ontario. By obtaining a clearer understanding of Canadian laws and culture, and understanding what government supports newcomers are eligible for, they are successfully adapting to life in Canada – and over time contributing to the rich fabric of cultures that make up this country.