Waterloo Region programs helping skilled immigrants find work in their field receive a $1.68-million provincial funding boost.
By Johanna Weidner, The Record
KITCHENER — Three local programs helping skilled immigrants find work in their field got a $1.68-million provincial funding boost, two focused on getting health care professionals practising here.
Conestoga College received $200,000 for its bridge to practical nursing program for internationally trained health professionals and the University of Waterloo’s international optometric bridging program got $942,000. Another $540,000 goes to the Immigration Partnership’s new Canadian employment connections program, in total assisting more than 500 newcomers.
Reducing the barriers for internationally trained immigrants doesn’t just help them find employment, said Kitchener Centre MPP John Milloy at the Tuesday announcement held on Conestoga’s Doon campus.
“It’s the benefit we all receive from new Canadians and all they bring to our country,” Milloy said.
The local programs are among 70 new and renewed projects across Ontario being funded by the provincial and federal government, all aimed at adapting immigrants’ skills to Canadian expectations to strengthen the economy.
“We have to rely on the skills and know-how of our citizens,” Milloy said.
Immigration Partnership’s program connects trained immigrants and employers through internships, workshops and networking opportunities.