International Women’s Day today, March 8th, is an annual celebration of the achievements of women around the world. This year, Welcoming Communities Grey Bruce and the United Way Bruce Grey are celebrating newcomer women and the skills and diverse perspective they bring from around the world to Grey and Bruce.
The two organizations partnered over the past 18 months on the Rural Pathways for Newcomer Women Project to learn from newcomer women in the region about the employment barriers they face in Grey Bruce. The project was funded by Immigration Refugees Citizenship Canada.
“Women who are visible minority newcomers bring amazing skills and experience to our communities, but often face barriers to employment because of social isolation, or when their education and work experience is not recognized here in Canada,” said Manpreet Kaur Sangha, a Welcoming Communities board member who was active on the Advisory Committee.
Pathways project co coordinators May Ip and Olga Gura noted that newcomer women in Grey Bruce were generous and passionate participants in the project from the beginning, throughout the pandemic, until the project end in December 2020. ‘With their help we have developed and evaluated new tools and resources for employers, employment services and our community to address employment barriers called the Success for Everyone Toolkit‘
“The Success for Everyone Toolkit is a rich and practical resource for employers, employment services, community service providers and municipalities,” said Azar Azad, a member of the Pathways Employer subcommittee, and board member of Welcoming Communities. ‘We are very proud of this innovative Toolkit. It is a free download on the Welcoming Communities website:
Welcoming Communities and the United Way Bruce are grateful for the skills, insights and dedication that visible minority newcomer women brought to the Rural Pathways project. On International Women’s Day we invite everyone to celebrate the contributions of newcomer women to our community, and recognize that their success is a success for everyone!