SCF’s mission is centred on the successful integration of vulnerable newcomers in Canadian society. Our initial programming helped us identify the current needs of newcomers. We believe we best serve newcomers by addressing the core areas of education, employment, English training, mental health, and youth programs.
English Tutoring Program:
We partnered our program with the Helping Hands and Language Studies Department at the University of Toronto, Mississauga campus. SCF’s English Tutoring Program adds innovation and accessibility to language training. One on one in home tutoring sessions allow vulnerable newcomers to study English even as they deal with health issues, waitlists for ESL classes and other factors that inhibit their ability to partake in regular avenues to language training. Group sessions across the GTA offer newcomers unique classes such as writing skills development for those with higher level English skills. All of our clients gain access to e-learning resources that increase independence, efficiency and accessibility in language training. Over 350 volunteers served over 60 families with in-home ESL sessions.
This program has 3 aspects:
- One-on-One Home Tutoring: we bring English language classes to newcomers’ homes. Most of our clients are seniors, disabled persons, mothers unable to access daycare for their children, and others having difficulty accessing programs at external facilities.
- Personal Group Tutoring: groups of 15 meet with tutors at community spaces for two hour sessions. One hour is dedicated to individual studying and the second to group reflection meant to foster intercultural understanding and solidify course concepts.
- E-Learning: our online support and instruction supports tutors and offers additional learning for our clients. The e-learning modules will provide newcomers a self-paced curriculum to make learning English more accessible outside of their tutoring sessions.
An English speaking ability is essential for newcomers to adjust to Canadian society. Our English Tutoring Program is projected to engage 200 individuals per year in our one-on-one sessions and 120 newcomers through our group sessions.
The Catch-up program is designed to provide bridging education resources and services to Arabic speaking students ages 14-21. The program includes tutoring sessions focused on helping students catch-up with math and science skills using a hybrid learning environment. Tutors provide one on one support and also guide the students in using e-learning resources. The program also includes workshops for caregivers and settlement workers to help engage them in the catch-up process.
Women’s Wellness Program:
In collaboration with QED and Immigrant Services Guelph-Wellington, the Women’s Wellness Project (WWP) launches in September 2017. The Women Wellness Program is culturally customized and accessible for Arabic-speaking refugee women in Canada. The program is a series of culturally sensitive workshops consisting of four components:
- Mental Wellness First Aid Kit: e-learning videos that help overcome mental health stigma, teach self care concepts, and introduce tips on parenting traumatized children.
- Tips for Healthy Living: promotes healthy active living, and positivity.
- Therapeutic Recreation: focuses on the therapeutic effects of yoga.
- Women’s Expression Circle: provides women a platform to share experiences, form social bonds, and ask questions with a trained facilitator.
One objective of WWP is to strengthen community-based support and foster positive social interaction by strengthening the resilience of refugee and newcomer women. We promote mental health, proper nutrition, and active lifestyles.
Newcomers’ Networking Dinners:
This program includes personal monthly dinners uniting newcomers with Canadian professionals to overcome communication, cultural, psychological, and socio-economic barriers newcomers face. Some benefits include:
- connects newcomers with Canadian professionals for enhanced networks.
- builds newcomers’ English speaking skills.
- provides rich intercultural exchange.
Our first wave of dinners were sponsored by recognizable brands such as Huffington Post, Uber, and the University of Toronto. Our upcoming events are expected to empower 100 newcomers with knowledge and opportunities.
*The English Tutoring Program, Catch-Up and The Women’s Wellness Program are run in collaboration with our education technology partner: The Al-Qazzaz Foundation for Education and Development.
Partners & Collaborators:
- COSTI Immigrant Services
- Arab Community Centre of Toronto
- Al-Qazzaz Foundation for Education and Development
- University of Toronto, Mississauga: Helping Hands
- Refugee Career Jumpstart Project