New funding helps connect immigrants to rewarding careers

UP to 30 eligible British Columbians will get skills and training to prepare them for jobs as multicultural workers and outreach and family support workers in B.C.’s communities and schools.

This is a new Community and Employer Partnership (CEP) project from the Government of British Columbia and is intended for immigrants.

“This is the second intake of a great project running in Surrey that’s helping people to help themselves,” said Nicholas Simons, Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction, on Thursday. “Every British Columbian has the right to employment. Providing people the skills and training they need to find and keep good-paying jobs means they’re able to provide for themselves and their families.”

The Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction is providing approximately $235,000 to Options Community Services Society in Surrey to deliver skills and certification courses in three intakes of its Multicultural Worker Training Program. Students in the first intake, which started November 9, 2020, are on track to begin their work experience on February 1.

Participants will receive 12 weeks of occupational, employability and life-skills training, eight weeks of on-the-job work experience and three weeks of followup support to assist in their job search. They will also receive certification training, including Mental Health First Aid, First Aid Training: Emergency/CPR Level C, and Crisis Prevention Institute Nonviolent Crisis Intervention.

“Our program team is working closely with WorkBC centres as we continue to manage strong interests in and referrals to the program,” said Christine Mohr, Chief Executive Officer, Options Community Services Society. “I am proud that our team has been able to pivot to online delivery of skills training given public health restrictions in response to COVID-19. While we gear up for the second intake, participants from the first intake are excited and ready for their respective placements in a number of social services organizations for their eight-week work experience.”

Funding for this project is provided through the Project Based Labour Market Training stream of WorkBC’s CEP. CEP’s aim is to increase employment and work experience opportunities for unemployed British Columbians through leveraging local community partnerships, shared information, technology and innovative practices.

“Options Community Services Society has a long history of serving our community, helping people to raise themselves up,” said Bruce Ralston, MLA for Surrey-Whalley. “The people who come through this program will be well equipped to serve our citizens and make our communities better places.”

Full-time, group-based classroom and online learning for the second intake of the project starts on Monday, February 1. Project activities run through to June 30. Anyone interested in finding out more about this or other training opportunities can contact their local WorkBC centre.

More than $15 million will be invested in CEP projects throughout B.C. in 2020-21.

Learn More:

Learn how CEPs are helping local communities: