‘Ottawa’ Syrian Resettlement Groups in Ottawa Get $450K Boost
Community groups in Ottawa are getting a $450,000 boost to help newly landed Syrian refugees pay for housing and rent.
The Community Foundations of Canada, which represents 191 community foundations across the country, announced the “welcome fund” donation on Wednesday.
The money – granted to the Catholic Centre for Immigrants, the Ottawa Community Immigrant Services Organization and World Skills – will be used to subsidize Syrian refugees’ rent fees or resolve any landlord issues. It will also be used to provide mental health services and help with the job hunt, including language training.
“Newcomer families are already disproportionately represented in our family shelter system,” said Carl Nicholson, executive director of the Catholic Centre for Immigrants. “And so it’s absolutely critical that we invest in helping this newest and biggest community of newcomers avoid the need for shelter support.”
His organization has raised about $480,000 on its own. This grant will make a “huge difference,” said Nicholson.
Almost 1,800 Syrian refugees have landed in Ottawa. Of that figure, almost 1,100 on government assistance have found permanent housing. The remaining 700 are privately sponsored.
As of Wednesday, 26,859 Syrian refugees have resettled in Canada.
Immigration Minister John McCallum said 93 per cent of those refugees are in permanent homes.