June Parnership Leadership Update

The partnership meeting on June 5 and 6, 2018 in Toronto was a true knowledge exchange with a large and diverse audience, exciting presentations, and provocative conversations. Presenters discussed the lessons learned from settling privately-sponsored and government-assisted Syrian refugees, the diverse and evolving nature of the Local Immigration Partnerships, and the histories of Montréal and Toronto as sanctuary cities. The day also included three excellent poster presentations by postdoctoral fellows and graduate students and a fascinating interview with three newcomers who gamely outlined the difficult challenges that they overcame while settling in Canada. From partnership research, we learned that resilience is widely used in policy documents that rarely refer to migration and settlement. With humour and exemplary clarity, Naolo Charles and Sandra Guerra taught all of us how to create an effective infographic. Partnership members also had an opportunity to discuss how to collaborate on comparative and longitudinal research projects. For me, the knowledge exchange reinforced the value of a resilience approach for understanding immigration and settlement and enhancing settlement supports. Watch for summaries, slides, posters and even a video that will be available soon on the partnership website

After this jam-packed event, several of us retired to the local brew pub where we congratulated all the participants for their thoughtful contributions, everyone responsible for the superb logistics and the organizers of this successful event. I especially want to thank John Campey, Executive Director of the Ralph Thornton Community Centre and all his staff who graciously hosted the partnership and its guests.

Many of you have already met Sabrina Rajpaul who started her job as the Work Study Office Assistant just in time to contribute so ably to the partnership meeting. We are also fortunate that Adriana Espinosa de Los Monteros Romo joined us in May to complete a placement required by the MISS program at Ryerson University. I can now reveal that Diane Dyson has taken a leave from her job and the partnership to run for municipal office in the November elections. I know everyone joins me in wishing her the very best of luck. I also want to thank Jelena Zikic for her contributions as co-Chair of the York Region network. She recruited the participants for the closing interview and did a great job interviewing them.