New resources for career guidance and funding for a microloan program will help new Manitobans overcome barriers and find work in their fields more quickly, Labour and Immigration Minister Erna Braun announced.
“The Manitoba government is improving the recognition of foreign qualifications and supporting new Canadians by letting them put their education and experience to use,” said Minister Braun. “These new resources and supports will help newcomers transition more smoothly into the labour market and help them build a life and successful careers in Manitoba.”
The new resources for Manitoba Start will provide internationally educated newcomers with guidance, support and information to navigate the licensing process. The minister said these supports include:
- a first-of-its-kind in Canada Career Development Curriculum and training resources that will guide skilled immigrants in achieving their employment, licensing and career goals in Manitoba;
- new profession-specific resource guides to help newcomers navigate the licensing process in regulated professions;
- referral and guidance to newcomers on accessing financial supports such as Recognition Counts microloans; and
- job-matching services that help newcomers work in their occupational area.
The minister noted Manitoba Start is nationally recognized for providing immigrant employment and labour market services to newcomers. In 2015-16, Manitoba is providing $3 million for the Manitoba Start Program.
Minister Braun also announced ongoing funding for the highly successful Recognition Counts program. This program provides accessible, low-interest loans to help internationally skilled immigrants gain credential recognition or training they need to work in their fields of expertise in Manitoba.
Judith Hayes, executive director, Manitoba Start said, “By having better information and clear guidance on navigating the licensing process, newcomers will be in a better position to achieve full certification in their profession as quickly and efficiently as possible.”
“Since Recognition Counts was launched, it has provided much-needed supports to newcomers who want to work in their chosen field to get the certification, upgrading or training they need to have their education and experience recognized,” said Sandra Leone, manager, Recognition Counts, Supporting Employment and Economic Development Inc. (SEED Winnipeg). “We are pleased this valuable resource will continue to be available.”
Recognition Counts is delivered by SEED Winnipeg and the Assiniboine Credit Union.
North Bay to follow suit
The City of North Bay, Ontario will follow suit by helping skilled newcomers in the Nipissing district access loans to help them upgrade their credentials so they can get back to work in their field while living in Ontario.
The Skilled Newcomer Career Loan can help to alleviate some of the financial burden of upgrading skills by providing access to small loans (up to $5,000 for eligible applicants).
No credit history check required. Repayment terms include a seven per cent flat-rate interest over three years, with interest-only payments in the first year.
To be eligible for consideration, you must:
- Be a resident of Nipissing (permanent resident, citizen or refugee status)
- Have previously worked in your field in another country
- Have good English skills (CLB level 7) or plan to upgrade them in your work plan
- Know what is required of you to return to your field in Ontario
- Know that your field is reasonably in demand in Nipissing.
- Show that you are incapable of paying for upgrade courses on your own
- Agree to repay the loan with full interest within the time frame