How Canadian social workers help immigrants

How Canadian social workers help immigrants 

For many immigrants, it can be difficult to immediately adjust to the new surroundings of Canadian cities. It can be hard for families to know where to find the right social services, like doctors offices, counsellors, and schools. Thankfully, Canadian social workers are available to help newcomers with these and any other issues that may come up during the immigration process. Whether you find yourself settling in the Maritimes, moving to a central city, or making your new home on the west coast, there are social workers available all across Canada. These people have all the skills and connections needed to help newcomers find everything they need to settle in Canada.  

Getting Settled and Getting Connected

One of the most daunting tasks for a newcomer is finding adequate housing. It can be difficult to find an affordable home, especially when you are not familiar with the area. Immigration social workers can help their clients figure out how to approach the hunt for housing in their new city. They can help them find a trusted realtor who will track down the right home for them and guide them through the rehoming process. 

What’s more, social workers can help immigrants and their families to find communities that share their cultural background. It is extremely important for immigrant families to be able to connect to people with shared backgrounds and experiences, especially during big changes like moving to an unfamiliar country.  

Additionally, social workers can help newcomers navigate and find connections in the wider community. They can introduce them to members of the community who will help them in the process of adjusting to life in Canada. Whether that be volunteer organizations, tutors, or just helpful neighbours, social workers help to track down the people that are happy to assist newcomers. 

Finding Services

When moving to a new area, it is undoubtedly very difficult to find essential services like clinics and schools. And when it’s an entirely new country, it can be rather daunting to find out how these services operate in that region. Thankfully, social workers are there to help newcomers find the services they need. For instance, social workers can help their clients track down doctors and other medical professionals who can help them and their families with any health issues. Additionally, they can help find childcare facilities for the children of those families. And tracking down quality schools is very important to both newcomer families and their social workers.

Social workers can help their clients navigate their new community in many ways. They can help with transportation by showing them the city’s public transit options or by helping them obtain a Canadian driver’s license. They can also help guide them towards upgrading their qualifications or obtaining Canadian certifications at various schools, colleges, and universities. Additionally, they can help newcomers track down English or French language classes and tutors to help them improve their language skills. Alternatively, they can provide their clients with skilled interpreters and translators. 

Counselling and Consultation

Social workers understand the strain that immigration puts on people, and they do their best to help newcomers and their families as they adjust to their new homes. Many social workers offer personal consultation, whether on mental health, cultural disorientation, or uncertainty and anxiety about their current affairs. They also help clients find services to counsel and support those with PTSD and other war-related or refugee traumas. Whether it’s offering career and immigration consultation or giving counsel during difficult times, social workers provide newcomers with the help that they need to thrive in Canada. 

Social Workers at Settlement Organizations 

Social workers are crucial to the immigration process and to newcomers’ experiences. They are certainly the unsung heroes of the Canadian immigration process. Social workers pride themselves on being compassionate and dedicated to their clients’ happiness and wellbeing. Newcomers can reach out to social workers through various settlement organizations across Canada. As a result, these organizations connect immigrants to social workers and many of the services listed above. Following is a list of just a fraction of the settlement organizations in various provinces. 

Newfoundland: Association for New Canadians

Prince Edward Island: PEI Association for Newcomers to Canada

Nova Scotia: African Diaspora Association of the Maritimes; Antigonish Women’s Resource CentreImmigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia 

New Brunswick: Multicultural Association of Fredericton; Northwest Resource Center for Newcomers Inc.; Saint John Newcomers Centre

Quebec: Centre d’action bénévole de Québec; Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion; Office français de l’immigration et de l’intégration (OFII)

Ontario: Christie Refugee Welcome Centre; Cross-Cultural Community Services Association; Muslim Resource Centre for Social Support and Integration 

Manitoba: Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization of Manitoba; Manitoba Association of Newcomer Serving Organizations

Saskatchewan: India Canada Association of Saskatchewan; Regina Open Door Society (RODS); Saskatchewan Association of Immigrant Settlement and Integration Agencies (SAISIA)

Alberta: Alberta Association of Immigrant Serving Agencies; Calgary Immigrant Educational Society; Jewish Family Service Calgary (JFSC)

British Columbia: Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Service Agencies of BC( AMSSA ); BC Settlement & Integration Services (BCSIS); Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISSofBC)

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