More new immigrants, refugees and their families living in Fort Nelson will have access to a free English-language tutoring program, thanks to new funding of $8,000.
The English as a Second Language Settlement Assistance Program (ESLSAP) gives recent immigrants and refugees, who are settling in rural communities, an opportunity to access basic English language programs. The funding delivers on the commitment made in 'Canada Starts Here: The B.C. Jobs Plan' to support newcomers and enable them to fill some of the over one million jobs anticipated to open in BC over the next decade.
This grant is part of the 2011-12 ESLSAP budget of $2 million to deliver this award-winning program in 45 communities. This new funding also allows English Practice Groups, part of the ESLSAP curriculum, to be offered in more communities. Newcomers can now practise speaking conversational English in small group settings in 25 communities, such as Dawson Creek, Terrace and Whistler.
ESLSAP is one of the English-language programs offered through WelcomeBC - the Province's umbrella of services for immigrant settlement and integration services. The program is made possible through funding from the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia.
Last year, more than 700 volunteers throughout the province provided English-language tutoring to over 1,000 immigrant and refugee learners in regional and remote B.C. communities.
Pat Bell, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation -
"ESLSAP gives newcomers access to programs that lead to improved English language proficiency. Being confident and fluent in English is one of the most-important skills immigrants can acquire as they start their lives in B.C. - an essential building block for finding a job and settling into a new community."
Pat Pimm, MLA - Peace River North -
"I'm really pleased with this funding announcement. It's great to see the BC Jobs Plan come full circle with the B.C. government integrating supports for immigrant workers by helping them develop the language skills they need to be successful."
- ESLSAP is delivered in a small group, one-on-one tutoring environment which allows co-ordinators and tutors to focus on the learner's individual goals and language skills.
- ESLSAP received international recognition, winning the 2011 Grundtvig Award, out-of- Europe category, for Excellence in Adult Education from the European Association for the Education of Adults (EAEA).
- B.C. continues to be one of Canada's most popular destinations for new immigrants, welcoming more than 40,000 newcomers annually.
- By 2019, it is expected that there will be over a million job openings in the province, and skilled immigrants will play a vital role in filling almost one-third of those positions.
- Since 2008, more than $160 million in federal and provincial funding has been invested in English language development services for immigrants under WelcomeBC. For more information visit: http://www.welcomebc.ca/
- For information on becoming an ESLSAP volunteer tutor, visit: http://www.mytrainingbc.ca/eslsap/recruitment
Visit WelcomeBC: http://www.welcomebc.ca/
Government Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation