Immigration Partnership Fund Update
Thanks to the work of Immigration Partnership and many community partners, our community has stepped up with nearly $300,000 in donations to support the region's newest residents.
With The KWCF's matching program in place, this means nearly $700,000 has been made available to support programming and other needs.
Here are just a few of the impacts that have been made:
- Around 37 Syrian families have been partnered with local families from Waterloo Region to develop social connections and community through programs supported at Reception House Waterloo Region and YMCA Immigrant Services.
- 75 Syrian refugees have participated in wellbeing workshops, 37 were referred to counselling services and 51 private sponsors learned more about Syrian culture and mental health approaches through a program of the Community Coalition on Immigrants and Refugees.
- Syrian individuals have been able to access mental health supports through programs supported at KW Counselling, Lutherwood, and Muslim Social Services.
- 18 Syrian women participated in an 8-week sexual and reproductive health program through a collaborative program of the SHORE Centre.
- Professional interpretation has been provided so Syrian newcomers can access urgent medical and dental treatment through the KW Multicultural Centre.
- 200 Syrian families provided peer support and connected to local services through programs supported with ShamRose for Syrian Culture.
- At least 5 Syrian families have been financially assisted to access dental treatment and one Syrian family was supported to cover funeral costs of a family member diagnosed with a terminal illness on arrival.
To make a donation to support the Syrian newcomers visit Canada Helps or call The KWCF offices at 519-725-1806.
If you are looking for other ways to support Waterloo Region's newest residents visit www.wrwelcomesrefugees.ca.
Going Forward into 2017
We understand there's a broader need to help all newcomers belong. We learned this from our work with the Immigration Partnership and through Waterloo Region's Vital Signs®. In 2013 the Vital Signs report signaled that belonging is the number one priority in our community. That is why The KWCF focused its Smart & Caring Grants Program on impacting belonging. The Vital Grants stream, Community Grants stream and strategic grant opportunities will be fully committed to funding projects that will have a broader impact on belonging. These grants align with The KWCF's broader values and mission while providing opportunities for everyone to participate.
As local charitable organizations continue their work in resettlement, community integration and belonging, we encourage them to apply to the Community Grants stream in 2017.
Organizations supporting newcomers have also indicated that they see more opportunities to work together to build collective community capacity that will more effectively serve all newcomers. To this end, a longer term view, our newly-launched Barnraising Grants will support realignment projects that improve the ability of our Region's community organizations to collaboratively make positive change.