Website helps refugees access information in multiple languages that can help them settle and thrive in Alberta.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada – September 7, 2016: The Alberta Association of Immigrant Serving Agencies (AAISA) announces the launch of a new website, www.refugeealberta.ca, which will serve as a one-stop shop for refugees to access information on settling in Alberta and services to support them in their new life.
Following one of the largest resettlements of refugees in Canadian history, the website, which is funded by the Ministry of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, responds to a significant need across the province. Since November 2015, Canada resettled 25,000 Syrian refugees across the country–3,792 of which were welcomed by Albertans. Another wave of Syrian refugees integrate into their new lives by providing support with language, employment and social well-being. Over 1,400 of these services can be found on the website’s settlement service database.
Refugees like Sleman Aldib, an electrical engineer, theatre actor, and photographer who came to Calgary from Syria with his family eight months ago, can search for services in their area and find information on important every day topics like where to find a family doctor, what their rights are as a tenant, how to find a job, how the education system works and what to wear in the winter. Aldib, a privately sponsored refugee who provided input on the website, says that “all information you need is in the same place.” The website can also help sponsors like Mayssoun Hneidi, who together with her husband, brought Aldib and his family to Canada. Hneidi believes the website will empower refugees because it “…tells them about Alberta. People are always eager to know about the place they move to and now call home.”
AAISA is a regionally and nationally recognized leader, representative, hub, and an amplifier of the settlement and integration sector in Alberta. As an umbrella organization of immigrant serving organizations, AAISA’s mandate is to build sectorial capacity through professional development, research, and stakeholder engagement. AAISA’s member agencies provide services to assist newcomers in becoming fully integrated members of society. For more information, visit AAISA’s website at www.aaisa.ca.