November 8, 2006
Peel Newcomer Strategy Update
In February 2006, United Way of Peel Region and the Region of Peel co-sponsored an immigration planning and visioning meeting to develop a co-ordinated newcomer/immigrant services strategy. At that meeting, a preliminary vision emerged to ensure the successful integration of newcomers into all aspects of community life through a coordinated and integrated community plan.
To implement this vision, a collaboration called the “Peel Newcomer Strategy Group” has been formed. This group consists of representatives from various sectors including government (federal government, provincial government and the Region of Peel), business (boards of trade), the not-for-profit sector (settlement and LINC service providers, Peel LINC Partnership, Peel ISAP Committee, Social Planning Council of Peel, United Way of Peel Region), and academia (University of Toronto at Mississauga). A key strategy in the development of the community plan will be to seek input directly from newcomers/immigrants, employers, service providers, funders and other community partners. Research, current literature and best practices will also inform the development of this local community plan. Funding is being sought from the Department of Citizenship and Immigration (CIC) to support this initiative.
The Federal and Provincial governments are presently involved in developing plans to implement the Canada-Ontario Immigration Agreement. As part of this work and to prepare for the future allocation of funds, on October 12, 2006, CIC issued a Request for Expressions of Interest and Pre-Qualification (RFEIP) regarding the delivery of ISAP services. The ISAP program funds community agencies to deliver direct, essential services to eligible newcomers to meet their initial settlement needs. These services include port of entry reception, needs assessment, orientation, translation and interpretation, referral to community resources, solution-focused counselling, general information and employment-related services. The objective of the RFEIP is to create a list of pre-qualified service providers who would be suitable to deliver ISAP in Ontario. The submission deadline is Thursday, November 30, 2006. The list will be valid for a minimum of three years from the date of creation. That is why it is important that you are aware of this opportunity and that your agency considers making a submission by the deadline. The RFEIP is available on the Settlement.org website at the following address:
An information meeting will be held on November 17th, from 10 – 11am, with Citizenship & Immigration staff to provide information and answer any questions that you may have about the RFEIP. The meeting will be held at United Way offices at 5170 Dixie Road, Suite 300, Mississauga. Please RSVP your attendance to Cheryl Jones at 905-602-3619.
We also wanted to inform you of a training project being undertaken by the Peel Newcomer Strategy Group and funded by the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration. This project is aimed at providing cross-sectoral training opportunities within the human services sector. A key issue that was identified at the visioning session in February was to provide education and training opportunities between settlement and mainstream agencies. Plans are being developed to offer training sessions in the New Year.
We will continue to provide you with key updates and look forward to engaging the community in this significant and exciting initiative. If you have any questions or comments about this initiative, please contact either of us by phone or e-mail. Our contact information is found below.
905-791-7800 ext. 4939.