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Toronto annual picnic introduces newcomers to training and resources

Events such as Toronto Newcomer Day, above, introduce newcomers to Toronto and celebrate their contributions.

Toronto Mayor John Tory was joined by more than 200 newcomers and volunteers at a picnic in Dufferin Grove Park recently. 

The event was held in partnership with the City of Toronto’s Newcomer Office, COSTI Immigrant Services and Together Project, an initiative of Tides Canada.

“Toronto is a city built by immigrants – many who came here as refugees,” said Mayor John Tory. “Thank you to the agencies and their volunteers who work to make Toronto a welcoming city. I’m proud of the way the City collaborates with community agencies and the way Torontonians contribute to these welcoming efforts.”

The new Torontonians in attendance enjoyed a lunch with Mayor Tory. Face painting, soccer and frisbee were available for children.

“Our partnership with the City of Toronto Newcomer Office and the Together Project helps accelerate the integration of newcomers,” said Mario Calla, Executive Director of COSTI Immigrant Services. “Volunteer welcome groups provide invaluable support and assistance to newcomers. From the day they move from temporary housing to their new home, the Welcome group is by their side, providing great comfort to our clients when they first arrive at COSTI’s Ralph Chiodo Family Immigrant Reception Centre.”

“Our aim with the Together Project is to work alongside partners such as COSTI Immigrant Services and the City of Toronto to provide programs that foster social inclusion or host community events like this picnic,” said Anna Hill, Project Director with the Together Project. “Since 2017, we have matched over 200 volunteers with 200 newcomers in the GTA. We look forward to continuing our work with COSTI and local community agencies to match volunteers with newcomers across Toronto.”

For more than 65 years COSTI has contributed to the social fabric of Toronto, Ontario and Canada. COSTI was founded in 1952 by the Italian community, to help Italian immigrants settle in their new home. Today, COSTI is a community-based multicultural agency providing employment, language training, settlement and social services to all immigrant communities, new Canadians and individuals in need of assistance.

Together Project, a project of Tides Canada, connects newcomers and Canadians to build stronger, more integrated communities. Together Project matches Welcome groups of five or more volunteers with newly arrived government-assisted refugees for friendship and social support. Together Project works with partners to host community events and programs that foster social inclusion. Together Project also works with partners to provide training and resources to prepare volunteers to work effectively with newcomers.       

Posted: Aug 2, 2018

August 2019

Centennial College

Immigration Peel Canada

© CanadaBound Immigrant 2016