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Immigrant/Refugee Shelters

Programs that provide temporary shelter for refugees, refugee claimants and/or other immigrants who have no other housing arrangements. These facilities usually provide health, housing, employment, legal and other settlement services required by refugees.

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Immigration Services Complaints

Programs that accept and, where possible, attempt to resolve complaints regarding the quality of service, incompetence, availability, excessive fees, unethical or improper conduct or business practices of either licensed or self-styled immigration consultants or any other individual or company providing services relating to immigration issues.

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Citizenship Records

Programs that maintain copies, and where appropriate, provide access to the official documentation associated with the process of becoming a citizen. Included are declarations of intention to become a citizen, petitions and oaths that document the second step in the citizenship process, and other ancillary documents such as official orders of the court granting or denying citizenship that are sometimes found with citizenship records.

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Immigrant Benefits Assistance

Programs that provide assistance for non-citizens who are having difficulty understanding and/or obtaining access to the government-sponsored entitlement programs and social services for which they are eligible including housing programs, employment assistance and job training; medical assistance; and other government entitlements. The program may help these individuals understand the eligibility criteria for benefits and services, the benefits/services available, the payment process and the rights of beneficiaries; provide consultation and advice; help them complete benefits application forms; negotiate on their behalf with benefits administration and social service staff; and/or represent them in administrative processes or judicial litigation. Included are benefits counselling organizations that offer a range of advocacy services and legal aid programs that offer more formalized legal assistance.

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Citizenship/Immigration/Refugee Services

Programs that administer the laws in Canada which govern the conditions under which immigrants, refugees and visitors can legally enter and/or remain in the country or become citizens; and/or which provide assistance for people who need legal advice about how to proceed. Included are organizations that review and make administrative decisions regarding immigration, refugee and citizenship applications as well as those that help people complete and file application forms and/or appeal decisions.

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Citizenship Education

Programs that prepare individuals to take the oath of Canadian citizenship and to exercise the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, in addition to gaining an enhanced understanding of Canadian culture, history, geography and national resources.

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Immigrant/Refugee Employment Programs

Programs that provide comprehensive support services for immigrants and refugees who need assistance to prepare for, find and retain paid employment. Services may include vocational assessment, job search assistance, professional mentoring programs and other levels of initial and ongoing support. The emphasis is on preparing individuals for the expectations of employment in a new country and in particular, to obtain recognition for professional experience secured in another country and to obtain initial work experience in their new country.

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Conversation Partners

Programs that help international students and others whose first language is other than English or French develop those skills by arranging for people (usually volunteers) to spend time conversing with them enabling them to practice their English or French. Included are both one-to-one and group situations.

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Cultural Transition Facilitation

Programs that help arriving refugees, immigrants and repatriated persons settle and make an adjustment to the traditions, values and lifestyles of their adopted country.

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Cultural Transition Counselling

Programs that provide emotional support, information and guidance in a variety of settings for individuals, often refugees or other immigrants, who are experiencing stress, confusion and other feelings which result from difficulty adjusting to the language, customs, values and other aspects of a culture that is different than their own. Counselling may be available in the individual's primary language.

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Cultural Heritage Programs

Programs that support and celebrate the diversity of the community's social, artistic and intellectual inheritance.

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Ethnocultural Multipurpose Centres

Multipurpose centres that serve as focal points for specific ethnocultural groups within the community and which offer, at a single location, a wide variety of services and activities that are structured to meet the social, educational, economic, recreational and other needs of participants in ways that are culturally appropriate.

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Cultural Heritage Groups

Organizations that work for the preservation and promotion of the traditions, values and lifestyles of different cultural groups; organize activities and events which promote cultural exchange locally, regionally and nationally; and seek to encourage understanding and respect for different cultural heritages among youthful members of the group as well as the mainstream population.

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Immigrant Rights Groups

Organizations that support the passage and enforcement of laws and other social measures which protect the rights and interests of individuals who have newly arrived in the country or which govern the process by which individuals and families are granted permission to immigrate.

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The above terms and definitions are part of the Taxonomy of Human Services, used here by permission of INFO LINE of Los Angeles.


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