Agency Profile: Entering The Canadian Job Market

JVS Toronto Helps Newcomers Make The Right Connections

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Deepak* discovered with his recent job search what many newcomers to Canada already know: securing a job without a ready network, Canadian labour market knowledge or job experience, requires hard work and a touch of luck.

Deepak, an electronics engineer who arrived in Toronto from India in June 2005 with his family, set his sights on work as a field service technician in the health care sector.

Ambitious and determined, he enrolled in JVS Toronto’s Newcomer Employment Services (NES) program and learnt, among other job development skills, how to sell his qualifications in 30 seconds. Deepak gave his profile to a server at a local coffee shop and, quite by chance, was told about a contact at a large electronics firm. Thanks to the job development and employment counselling support he received at JVS Toronto, Deepak today works as a senior supervisor in the health care field.

Deepak’s story is only one of many at JVS Toronto, whose Newcomer Employment Services (NES), Job Search Workshop for Newcomers (JSW) and Mentoring Services have helped thousands of Canadian newcomers find work and financial stability in the GTA.

“Not giving up hope is key to finding work, says Beth MacDonald, Manager of NES, JVS Toronto North Office. “You must believe you will get a job. If you combine your perseverance with the advice from our employment counsellors and job developers, then you’re well on your way to succeeding,” MacDonald adds.

JVS Toronto helps deliver on that hope by providing programs and enhanced services focused on meeting the employment needs of newcomers. NES offers employment counselling/ support, job development training and job search assistance to help internationally trained professionals and trades people find work within their chosen field.

Separately, the Job-Search Workshop (JSW) program offers 16 hours of workshop sessions providing job search information to newcomers needing employment guidance quickly. Topics covered include researching job leads, writing an effective résumé, making calls to potential employers and preparing for interviews. Sessions are offered twice a month. Once armed with key skills from the NES and JSW workshops newcomers are well positioned to develop their own Job Action Plan.

Maya*, who came to Canada in 2003 with specific computer programming skills, worked with her JVS Toronto employment counsellor to draw up a top-ten list of companies hiring people with her skills. “We gathered all the information together about the companies and sent her out with a new résumé and cover letter,” says Jolanta Glinska, an Employment Counsellor at the NES South Office. Currently, Maya works in a bank in Toronto using her computer programming skills.

In addition to matching qualified newcomers with companies requiring their skills, JVS Toronto offers Mentoring Services that pair established Canadians with internationally trained professionals and trades people already working in their field. “Mentors can give them advise on a variety of topics, such as skills they may need to up-grade, labour market information, or tips on understanding the Canadian workplace culture,” says Brigid Elmy, Manager, JVS Toronto NES South Office, where the Mentoring Services program is located. ” Just as important, mentors offer support to newcomers, many of who are in Canada alone, having left their families behind in their home countries as they establish themselves in Canada.”

For more information about JVS Toronto’s Newcomer Services, please contact: NES North Office: 416-661-3010 ext 311, nesnorth@jvstoronto.org, or NES South Office: 416-658-3101, ext. 223, nessouth@jvstoronto.org

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