Archive for the ‘Settlement’ Category

Toronto panel discussion on immigrant children and families

Friday, January 10th, 2014

CERIS, the Ontario Metropolis Centre is hosting a panel discussion on immigrant children and families on Friday, January 31st from 12noon to 1:30pm in Toronto.

From the CERIS site:

“This panel discussion highlights two unique research projects and one local initiative on immigrant children and families. Monica Valencia will present the findings of her participatory research with a group of Latin American immigrant children in Toronto. Focusing on the growing phenomenon of education migration, Eunjung Lee and Marjorie Johnstone will take up the case of South Korean transnational families mobilizing for their children’s education in Canada. Aamna Ashraf will discuss some of the ways Peel Newcomer Strategy Group is working with the settlement sector, local government, and community stakeholders in order for newcomer families to succeed once they arrive in Peel”.

Presenters:
Eunjung Lee, Ph.D., and Marjorie Johnstone, Ph.D. Candidate, Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work, University of Toronto
Aamna Ashraf, M.Ed., Peel Newcomer Strategy Group
Discussant:
Rupaleem Bhuyan, Ph.D., Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work, University of Toronto

Building our capacity to support transitions of immigrant/refugee children and youth

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

BCs Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Service Agencies (AMSSA) have released a report post their provincial learning exchange on the topic of Building capacity to support transitions of immigrant and refugee children and youth held this summer.

There were several goals for the event:

- to create opportunities for learning about current and emerging research and best practices

- to increase the skills, knowledge and practice of service providers who work with immigrant and refugee children and youth

- for networking, learning from each other and meeting new colleagues

- to re-energize and develop synergy amongst the different sub-sectors

- to identify emerging issues and priorities for future work and development.

The report includes background, goals and overviews and discusses what is called three big ideas for serving newcomer children and youth: Settlement, culture, and readiness.

Mothercraft’s “Caring for Canada’s Children” online training project

Monday, August 20th, 2012

Caring for Canada’s Children was an online training event offered by Mothercraft 2009-2010, and can be found archived on the Mothercraft website.

Funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Mothercraft offered Caring for Canada’s Children training course for settlement workers and other professionals working with newcomer families and children from birth to age six. The two-year online training program covered many topics, including:

The effects of migration policy on family reorganization

Adaptations to parenting: Healthy family functioning

The Challenges to cultural and geographic dislocation

The global worker: Cultural competence in the settlement sector.

Mothercraft is seeking renewed funding to support updated training to include a training manual and future professional training.

If you participated in Mothercraft’s Caring for Canada’s Children, and have feedback, please respond to the following questions via email to Cindy Kwan at ckwan@mothercraft.org .

1.  Since the Caring for Canada’s Children training, have you found the information useful in your professional work?

2. Would you be interested in a more thorough updated training manual focused on newcomer families: issues for families with infants and young children under six years of age?

3.  Please share a quick comment with us about the Caring for Canada’s Children training and its use in your professional work.

Responses are due by Friday, August 24, 2012

Call for papers: International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

The International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care is (from their website) “a multidisciplinary journal focusing on international migration. The journal’s focus includes coverage of labour migration, asylum seekers, refugees and undocumented migrants, with an emphasis on health and social care and mental health issues.

“The following themes are of particular interest to the journal:
- Health care of migrants and refugees
- Impact of displacement on health and social care needs
- Treatment of refugee children
- Impact of family separation
- Human trafficking
- Integration of migrants and refugees”.

Submissions should be sent to the Editor, Professor Charles Watters at charles.watters@rutgers.edu

Author Guidelines.

CIC call for proposals for settlement and resettlement programs

Friday, August 3rd, 2012

Citizenship and Immigration Canada has issued a call for papers for the provision of settlement and resettlement projects that are local, regional, national and international in scope.

Related documents:

National call for proposals

Funding guidelines

FAQs

This call for settlement and resettlement projects includes mention of a new model of what used to called “childminding”. The new model is now called Care for Newcomer Children (CNC). Information is available on the CMAS website on the CNC model, including:

Care for Newcomer Children: Highlights

Care for Newcomer Children Bulletin

Care for Newcomer Children: Questions & Answers

For more information on the CIC call, and to ask questions, contact CFP2012@cic.gc.ca. Deadline is Sept 7, 2012.

The Drummond Commission recommendations on immigration (and the missed opportunities to address immigrant children/families)

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

There has been much examination and discussion of the recommendations of the recently released Drummond Commission on the Reform of Ontario’s Public Services (struck by Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty and Finance Minister Dwight Duncan). immigrantchildren.ca notes that the Commission has lost the opportunity to highlight and promote the importance of addressing both the needs of immigrant families with young children – and the contribution that immigrant parents can make to the Ontario economy if these needs are supported.

In the introduction, “The Economic Importance of Immigration”, the Drummond report says:

“By attracting skilled workers from abroad, Ontario can better address potential labour-market shortages. Maintaining labour-force growth, aided by successful immigrants, can help sustain Ontario’s long-term economic growth”.

immigrantchildren.ca believes that immigrant parents may be able to contribute economically by participating in the labour force, but only if they are secure in their child care arrangements. Current federal initiatives for child care are almost absent. There is an opportunity for the federal government to partner with the provinces to ensure that culturally appropriate child care is made available to newcomers.

This introduction ends with the bold statement: “In short, future trends in immigration and the degree to which Ontario can successfully integrate new arrivals into the province’s labour market and social fabric will have a significant effect on Ontario’s fiscal fortunes”. The Drummond report makes a case for ensuring that social supports are in place for immigrants in order for them to contribute to the economy through labour force participation. Child care is one such social support. We wonder how it was overlooked.

In the Commission’s section on immigration, seven recommendations are made. With respect to each of the recommendations, immigrantchildren.ca has some initial thoughts. We invite more discussion, debate and comment. (Drummond report recommendations in bold, with comments in italics following).

Recommendation 10-1: Develop a position on immigration policies that is in the province’s best economic and social interests. Present this position to the federal government with the expectation that, as the largest recipient of immigrants in Canada, Ontario’s interest will be given considerable weight in federal policy development.

What is in the best interest is the development of fully funded culturally appropriate child care system that will support immigrant parents’ participation in the labour force. The federal government should, alongside, develop federal policy on child care for newcomer families that meets the needs not only of the national economy, but the social benefits of immigrant parents participation in the workforce if there is acceptable child care available, affordable and accessible to newcomers.

Recommendation 10-2: Catalyze national discussions on immigration policy as the successful integration of immigrants is critical for Canada’s and Ontario’s economic futures.

Few programs support integration better than community-based early learning and child care programs. Situated in public schools (as proposed in the full day kindergarten program of the McGuinty government), culturally appropriate child care for newcomer children – indeed, for all children – is a key catalyst to promotion of Canadian values and an optimal welcoming point for children and parents alike.

Recommendation 10-3: Advocate the federal government for a greater provincial role in immigrant selection to ensure that the level and mix of immigrants coming to Ontario is optimized to support economic prosperity and improve outcomes for immigrants. Barring success, advocate for an expanded Provincial Nominee Program.

The PNP might also explore age of the children of immigrants recruited through it. If Canada and Ontario are to thrive, the “level and mix” of immigrants must include children from birth to age eight and a PNP is well positioned to address this gap.

Recommendation 10-4: Press the federal government to be more transparent in its refugee policies and practices and to compensate Ontario for the costs of providing additional social supports to refugees and refugee claimants.

In our discussions and recommendations for ‘culturally appropriate child care’, it must be noted that refugee children have significantly different needs than children of immigrants who choose to emigrate. Services and supports for refugee children and youth must be developed with these specific needs in mind.

Recommendation 10-6: Streamline and integrate provincially delivered integration and settlement services for recent immigrants with Employment Ontario.

Within the discussion for recommendations 5 & 6 is found the statement “Two of the key drivers of labour-market success for immigrants are a working knowledge of one of Canada’s official languages and educational credentials that are accepted by regulatory bodies and potential employers”. While immigrantchildren.ca would agree that language and credentials are key, the Drummond report misses the mark by neglecting to consider the importance of child care for any working parent.

Recommendation 10-7: Advocate for devolving federal immigrant settlement and training programs to the province…

Again, we would argue that any settlement funding agreement with the federal government should include start-up and ongoing funds for child care.

~

The Commission cites a number of studies in its report including one by Mr Drummond himself that clearly articulates and recognizes the value of high quality child care. See D. Drummond, and F, Fong, “The Changing Canadian Workplace”, TD Economics, TD Bank Financial Group, 2010.

“…the higher incidence of part-time employment is caused, in part, by the cultural notion that women remain the primary caretaker of a family. As such, full-time employment is most likely not an option for many women as this would imply foregoing time to tend to household responsibilities. This also speaks to the poor state of childcare options available to many Canadians. Among comparative advanced nations in the OECD, Canada spends the smallest share of its GDP on early childhood education and care (ECEC) for those aged 0-6. At just 0.25% of GDP, this is extremely distant from the 1.5%-2% range spent by the Scandinavian countries. And since ECEC spending falls under provincial jurisdiction, the 0.25% figure is an aver- age across the provinces and is likely skewed by the heavy subsidization in Quebec where, for example, the $7 per day childcare provides for many lower income parents. Hence, regardless of the fact that Canada has one of the highest female participation rates in the world, participation in childcare services for children under the age of 3 is only in the middle of the pack among the OECD”.

Another report cited by the Commission is Fernando Mata, “The Non-Accreditation of Immigrant Professionals in Canada: Societal Dimensions of the Problem”, Department of Canadian Heritage, 1999:

“A recent example is a survey of the accreditation problems faced by immigrant women in the nursing, teaching and social work professions in partnership with the National Organization of Immigrant and Visible Minority Women in Canada (NOIVMWC). The report coming out from the survey revealed that immigrant women with professional degrees, in addition to the common problems faced by male counterparts, were more negatively affected by “lack of services and resources in the areas of childcare and language training”.

The Commission rightfully relied on a careful examination of the literature in addition to its consultations. The literature findings, including Mr. Drummond’s own work, clearly sees the value of a system of high quality early learning and child care as an employment support and a support to integration of newcomers, but it failed to include child care as a recommendation to the people of Ontario. As such, it has failed immigrant families.

Save the date: The University of Guelph’s immigrant children conference

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Dr. Susan Chuang will once again host an On New Shores immigrant children conference from the Department of Family Relations and Applied Nutrition at the University of Guelph in 2012.

The dates are October 25-26. The theme is happiness.

The 2010 conference was comprehensive, engaging and a great way to connect with researchers, policy makers and front-line workers passionate about understanding and empowering immigrant children, youth and families.

Save the date; c’mon, get happy!

ANCIE Sept bulletin on international students

Saturday, September 17th, 2011

Home

AMSSA – The Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Services of BC also manages the AMSSA Newcomer Information Exchange (ANCIE) and releases a quarterly e-Bulletin on a number of topics related to newcomer children.

The September 2011 bulletin is on international students; students who are in Canada on a visa or as a refugee claimant. The bulletin examines why international students come to Canada, shares perspectives from business and teachers, and provides information on how to support international students as they navigate their way through the BC school system. (Information is relevant and applicable across jurisdictions).

Visit the ANCIE page to learn how to subscribe.

Good child care is a barrier identified in Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) report

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities has released a report today on the barriers to immigrant integration. A brief quote from the report/website:

“Municipalities are the front-line, first-responders for many immigrants´ needs, yet we collect just eight cents of every tax-dollar paid in Canada and have been given no formal role in developing federal immigration policies and programs,” said FCM vice-president Claude Dauphin. “The federal government must recognize municipalities as key partners in immigrant settlement and work with us to tailor solutions to local needs.”

“FCM called on the federal government to protect long-term investments in communities, including more than $500 million in annual housing investments scheduled to expire during the next decade; protect and build on recent investments in Canada’s infrastructure and public transit; work with municipalities, provinces and territories to design longer-term settlement programs that respond better to changing local needs; and collect data on immigrants´ needs and report back to Canadians on the results”.

Among the main findings of the FCM report is the need to provide more and better ESL clasess for parents, alongside afffordable, accessible child care.

Read the full report here.

Call for papers: Restructuring refuge and settlement: Responding to the global dynamics of displacement

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

The Centre for Refugee Studies at York University hosts the 2012 Canadian Association for Refugee and Forced Migration Studies (CARFMS) conference May 16-18th at York U, Toronto.

From the call for papers: “The 2012 CARFMS conference will bring together researchers, policymakers, displaced persons and advocates from diverse disciplinary and regional backgrounds to discuss the issue of restructuring refuge and settlement witha view to better understanding how migration policies, processes andstructures responds to the global dynamics of displacement. We inviteparticipants from a wide range of perspectives to explore the practical,experiential, policy-oriented, legal and theoretical questions raised byrefuge and settlement at the local, national, regional and internationallevels. The conference will feature keynote and plenary speeches fromleaders in the field, and we welcome proposals for individual papers andorganized panels structured around the following broad subthemes:

Restructuring settlement: Local, national, comparative and international issues and concerns

States utilitarian approach towards migration challenges the balancebetween the objective of economic development, on the one hand, and integration and equal treatment of migrants, on the other. Recent changes inthe selection of migrant workers have negative consequences on social cohesion. Settlement, adaptation and integration policies play an importantrole at local, national and international levels to address this situationand prevent exclusion: What are the strengths and the weaknesses ofsettlement policies? How should these policies be adapted to meet the needsof increasing numbers of temporary workers? How can actors promote a process of integration that fosters social cohesion? What is the role played by local and national authorities, employers and members of civil society? How to ensure coherence and coordination between various actors dealing with issues such as health, education, social welfare, employment and law enforcement? What are particular legal, social, economic needs of different groups of migrants? How does gender, age, ability, race and other factors affect settlement? What are the best settlement practices?

Restructuring refuge: Local, national, comparative and international issues and concerns

The recent reform of the Canadian asylum system aims at accelerating the refugee status determination process and reducing the number of asylum claims by making the system less attractive. In North America, the United States and Canada cooperate to stem ‘unwanted’ migration. Similar developments can be observed in other parts of the world. Critical analysis of recent trends and developments contributes to a better understanding of current challenges: How do local, regional and international mechanisms and logics transform political and media discourse, norms, policies and practices related to forced migrants? What are the changes in institutional and procedural arrangements to deal with refugee and asylum claims? How do these changes affect protection norms and policies at the local, national and international level? How do international and local actors, institutions and agencies promote the legal, economic and social inclusion of forced migrants?

Restructuring settlement and refuge:  New approaches and theories

Innovative approaches and theories developed within traditional disciplines or in interdisciplinary lines foster knowledge on current norms, policies and practices linked to questions of settlement and refuge. New theoretical, conceptual, methodological issues from diverse critical and institutional perspectives highlight these questions, including: the link between refuge and security in an era of globalization; the impact of restrictive regulation of the freedom of movement of forced migrants; the need to redefine policies of resettlement, adaptation, and integration of immigrants and refugees in a context of changing migration figures; the adaptation of settlement policies to promote social inclusion of low-skilled temporary workers, asylum seekers and irregular migrants; settlement and citizenship.

Individuals wishing to present a paper at the conference must submit a250-word abstract and 100-word biography by December 30, 2011. The conference organizers welcome submissions of both individual papers and proposals for panels. Please submit your abstract via the conference website. For more information, please contact Michele Millard at mmillard@yorku.ca”.

Children on the move: The impact of voluntary and involuntary migration on the lives of children

Thursday, July 7th, 2011

A special issue of Global Studies of Childhood (Vol 1, No 2, 2011) on the impact of migration on the lives of children has been released. Edited by Ada Lai and Rupert MacLean, the issue includes the following articles:

Ravinder Sidhu, Sandra Taylor & Pam Christie. Schooling and Refugees: Engaging with the complex trajectories of globalisation.

Su-Ann Oh. Rice, Slippers, Bananas and Caneball: Children’s narratives of internal displacement and forced migration from Burma.

Rajeshwari Asokaraj. Resisting Bare Life: Children’s reproduction of quotidian culture in a Sri Lankan camp.

Antonina Tereshchenko & Helena C. Araujo. Stories of Belonging: Ukrainian immigrant children’s experiences of Portugal.

Celeste Y.M. Yuen & Rosalind Wu. New Schooling and New Identities: Chinese immigrant students’ perspectives.

For information on the journal, see the Global Studies of Childhood website.

Immigrant children, youth and families: A Qualitative analysis of the challenges of integration

Sunday, May 22nd, 2011

This spring, the Social Planning Council of Ottawa concluded work on “Immigrant children, youth and families: A Qualitative analysis of the challenges of integration”, as part of their Families in Community project.

The report addresses the disconnect when newcomer families feel their parenting and child-rearing methods are not acknowledged/respected and the tension service providers feel about some newcomers who they perceive demonstrate a lack of commitment to early child development.

Next stages in the SPCO Families in Community project will result in:

An analysis of best/good practices for culturally-based family supports by ethno-cultural organizations.

Supports to good/best practices within 8 pilot projects with small ethno-cultural organizations.

A resource kit for mainstream family services based on good practices serving new immigrant families.

The report will be launched at the annual Social Planning Council of Ottawa AGM, May 26, 2011 in Ottawa. For information, contact Helene by May 15 at 613-236-9300 ext. 300 office@spcottawa.on.ca.  Free admission, but donations are welcome.