Newcomers arriving in British Columbia now have better access to labour-market services, trauma counselling and co-ordinated community connections through a one-time investment of $15 million to settlement-service organizations across the province.
“B.C.’s settlement sector continues to go above and beyond to support refugees and newcomers as they transition to life in Canada,” said Nathan Cullen, Minister of Municipal Affairs. “To support their incredible work and to ensure those arriving from around the world are well supported, we’re investing $15 million in new funding to build organizational capacity and ensure newcomers can more easily integrate into their new communities.”
The funding will be dispersed over two years and includes an additional $12 million for the BC Settlement and Integration Services program, $1 million for the Refugee Readiness Fund expansion and $1 million for community cultural organizations that are supporting displaced Ukrainians and new refugees. This also includes $1 million to expand the bc211 support service and increase staffing.
Settlement organizations will now have the ability to offer more services and build capacity to serve not only Ukrainians and their family members, but other newcomers and refugee claimants as well.
“The increased funding will create more welcoming communities for refugees, refugee claimants, Ukrainians and other newcomers settling in our province,” said Katie Crocker, CEO of the Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Service Agencies. “I applaud the government for recognizing the expertise of our membership and our partners in the settlement and integration of all newcomers and for taking this important step to ensure the proper supports are there when they are needed.”
For a factsheet about supports for newcomers, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/26749
To learn more about what supports are available to Ukrainians, or how to support Ukrainians arriving in B.C., visit the Welcoming Ukraine website at http://gov.bc.ca/WelcomingUkraine or call Service BC at 1 800 663-7867.
A backgrounder follows.