- United States
Good news for immigrants living in Kitchener, Ontario as Canadian Federal government has provided a financial package worth $1.68 million for the uplift of the skilled immigrant training programs preparing them for Canadian licensing. The announcement was made by Kitchener Centre MPP John Milloy this Tuesday July 31st, 2012 at the Doon campus of Conestoga College in Kitchener.
Milloy said that the professional skills of the citizens are assets for the City. “Reducing the barriers for internationally trained immigrants doesn’t help them find employment,” Milloy said. ”It’s the benefit we all receive from the new Canadians and all they bring to our country.”
The funds are to be utilized for supporting three skilled immigrant programs held by three institutions. Two of these programs are aimed at getting health care and medical professionals to practice in the vicinity. The remaining one program is focused on assisting more than 500 newcomers in Canada called the Canadian employment connections program.
This program, run by Immigration Partnership, received $540,000 from the package. The program uses internships, workshops and similar channels to link the local employers with professionally trained immigrants.
From the first two programs, first one is at the University of Waterloo and provides assistance to skilled Immigrant optometrists in Canada through the international optometric bridging program. This program, which received a total of $942,000 in funds from the announced package, helps internationally trained optometrist and prepares them for the license exams which will allow them to practice in the Country. Till now the program has accommodated more than 200 immigrants in a period of seven years.
The second program is held at the Conestoga College in Kitchener. The program, which received about $200,000 in funds from the package, is a practical nursing program providing assistance to internationally trained health professionals. The four month long program provides training to immigrants with health care backgrounds, including English language education training and special trainings to upgrade professional skills.
Conestoga has reported that it will be hosting its fourth group in their practical nurse bridge class this fall. The immigrants start the program before joining the second year of the practical nurse diploma program.
Initially, the program was started to upgrade skills of foreign trained nurses. After a while, doctors also started taking interest in it. Two third of the upcoming session group are doctors.
One of these immigrant Doctors is Wageeh Habashi, an Egyptian Cardiologist. Habashi and his family moved to Canada back in 2009. Since then Habashi has been striving hard to upgrade his professional skills by taking medical exams in Canada. He admits that it is not as easy as it appears to procure employment in Canada.
Habashi said that he was overjoyed to learn about the program in Conestoga College. He said that this provided him a lot of moral support that he could actually return to the field he loves.
“It is really great feeling to find people around you are offering help,” Habashi said.
Chairman of Certificate programs and continuing education John Richards said that the immigrants are qualified to be in Canada but they are not ready to work in the country.
There are approximately 70 similar projects running throughout Ontario, which are being funded by the government. All these projects are pursuing the same goal, of providing better integration facilities and support to skilled immigrants so that they can fully contribute to the Canadian economy. Canadian immigration should support these programs and affiliate itself with some of the institutions providing these services to create an air of trust among the immigrants.
Tags: Canada, Canadian employment connections program, Canadian Immigration, Immigration, internationally trained health professionals, internationally trained immigrants, Kitchener, Kitchener’s skilled immigrant programs, Ontario, skilled Immigrant optometrists in Canada