Latest Blog Posts

  • From displacement to citizenship: First EMPP candidate is now a Canadian
    As he waited for the Zoom meeting to start, Mohammed wasn’t sure how a virtual ceremony would feel. He had scheduled an online ceremony to more quickly complete this last step of his Canadian citizenship, eager to get a Canadian passport to travel again to see family. As he listened to the ceremony and saw the video panels of dozens of fellow newcomers, he felt deeply moved and part of a bigger whole, in his own living room. His wife, already a Canadian, stood just off camera […]
  • Ways to support people affected by flooding in Libya
    Severe flooding in Libya has caused an emergency in the northeastern city of Derna. More than 6,000 people have lost their lives and many thousands are still missing.  Downpour and broken dams are among the main reported causes, and the weather event is considered worsened by climate change. The disaster happens as the people of Libya and those living as refugees in the country face ongoing conflict and economic insecurity. For years, people in refugee situations from different parts of the world have crossed into Libya and […]
  • Ways to support people affected by the earthquake in Morocco
    On Friday, an earthquake hit Morocco in the Atlas Mountains, about 70 kilometres outside the city of Marrakech. More than 2,600 people have lost their lives. It is the deadliest earthquake recorded in Morocco in over 60 years. Morocco is home to people seeking refugee from many parts of the world. We’re thinking of them and all communities impacted by the disaster.  If you have the resources to donate, here are a few options to consider:  Please research the organization and campaign that seems right to you […]
  • Beyond reading: TalentLift and Hoot Reading partnership helps newcomer kids thrive
    Sam’s favourite books are about dogs, and he likes reading them with Ms. Melissa. It’s an impressive feat for a 4-and-a-half-year-old to already be reading, but even more so when one considers that Sam and his family have only been in Canada for six months. Arriving from Syria on a cold January day, Sam and his family had only just settled into Vaughan, Ontario before he began kindergarten. The first couple of weeks were a struggle for Sam — not knowing any English meant that socializing and […]
  • “Nursing is a form of love,” Abapi shares her journey to St. John’s
    “You can’t sit down with me for more than a couple of minutes without me telling you that I’m a nurse,” says Abapi, calling from her home in Abuja, Nigeria. “Because when I let people know I’m a nurse, I’m indirectly letting them know I love, I care, and I have compassion, and whatever needs you have, you can share with me.” “There’s no human being on earth that doesn’t need a nurse in their lifetime.” For Abapi, nursing is more than a profession, it’s an intrinsic […]
  • A passion for care and inclusion, from Kakuma to Durham
    “For me,” says Sabri, “being a nurse is not just a profession, but it is a calling – filled with countless rewards and fulfilling experiences.” Speaking from his home in the Kakuma refugee camp in northern Kenya, Sabri Musa, a healthcare professional and father of two small children is reflecting on the career that he has shaped his life around, and the journey it is about to take him on. In a couple of months, Sabri and his family will move to Durham, Ontario, so that Sabri […]
  • CERC policy brief: What Canada gets right (and wrong) in economic pathways for displaced talent
    The Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP) is positioned to grow into one of Canada’s main responses to displacement with a set of changes announced in June. There’s a lot that Canada gets right in its approach to opening economic pathways to displaced talent under the pilot, but many things it can improve. These areas are outlined in a new policy brief published by the Toronto Metropolitan University’s Canada Excellence Research Chair (CERC) in Migration and Integration, written by our Dana Wagner.  At this turning point: Are we […]
  • Watching their daughters thrive: Najeebullah and Shukria’s Journey to Canada
    For Najeebullah, the long, arduous journey from Afghanistan to Canada has been worth it to see the laughter and smiles on his daughters’ faces as they cruise around the first playground they’ve ever had the chance to play on. An electrical engineer by training, Najeeb and his wife and daughters were forced to leave Afghanistan when the Taliban took over, seeking refuge in Pakistan. Mid-way through a master’s degree in electrical engineering and involved in several community initiatives in Afghanistan, the transition to life in Pakistan was […]
  • A new life for a young family
    For Abdulaziz, an upcoming move to Ontario is about more than a career-related relocation: it’s about creating a fresh start and building a future for his young children. Originally from Syria, Abdulaziz was once an economics student in Aleppo before the Syrian civil war turned the country upside down, forcing Abdulaziz to seek refugee status in Erbil, Iraq’s Kurdistan region. Unable to resume his studies in Iraqi universities due to discrimination against migrants and upheaval due to the encroachment of Daesh in Northern Iraq, Abdulaziz says he […]
  • A new, simple visa lets you relocate colleagues from refugee situations. This World Refugee Day, start meeting them.
    Canada launched a new immigration pathway last week to help almost any hiring team recruit and relocate colleagues from refugee situations.  This country has long understood the value of enabling groups of citizens to get involved in opening our communities to people in displacement. The Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program has seen more than 300,000 people relocate over the years because of this impulse to take individual action in the face of global crises – like oppression in Afghanistan, war in Sudan, refugee camps that persist for […]
  • Gamechanger: Canada’s new economic immigration streams for displaced talent now open
    Canada’s groundbreaking pilot supporting talented people living as refugees to apply for economic immigration has expanded and now includes a new federal pathway. The goal is a simpler and faster application that helps to scale the use of jobs and skilled visas to Canada as a solution to displacement, while simultaneously addressing critical labour shortages faced by businesses. The new federal pathway is an expansion of Canada’s Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP) and does not replace the current EMPP accommodations to other existing visa pathways, but will […]
  • Ethiopia insights: Displaced job seekers ready and eager to meet the needs of Canadian employers
    “I’m an artist and a carpenter. My dream is to be an engineer.” “My wish is to join a telecom in human resources.” “My dream job is to support individuals in finding their way into entrepreneurship.” “I have a dream of becoming a gynaecologist.” “I want to study international relations and help other refugees. I want to help my people.” This April, members of the TalentLift team had the opportunity to speak with a few of the many talented candidates who are living in displacement in Ethiopia. […]
  • Hiring with Impact: Employers now have a faster route to hire displaced talent to address skills shortages
    Canada’s Immigration Minister Sean Fraser announced today that a new federal immigration pathway is coming this summer to support Canadian employers to hire candidates living as refugees.   The new pathway will be an expansion of Canada’s Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP) and will not replace the current EMPP changes to other existing visa pathways, but will operate as an additional route.  The goal is a simpler and faster pathway that helps to scale the use of jobs and skilled visas to Canada as a solution to displacement […]
  • Emergency visa to Canada for Ukrainians extended
    Canada will continue to welcome Ukrainians displaced by war through the Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel (CUAET), which was set to expire March 31, 2023.  Canada’s Immigration Minister announced that the program will be extended as follows: How it works This visa pathway is open to any Ukrainian national. Applicants apply online for a visitor visa and have the option to apply for an open work permit which will allow them to work for any employer in Canada. CUAET applicants have the following fees waived: Visa application […]
  • Omar lands in Vancouver with ChainXY, a company that believes “everyone deserves opportunity”
    Home is Palestine but Omar grew up in Lebanon. Like half a million other Palestinians in the same borders, he had refugee status and a limit on what he could do and achieve. There are nearly 40 professions that Palestinians in Lebanon are legally unable to work in. They can’t own property. They often can’t get work permits or travel permission, or at least not easily. Many live in camps across Lebanon that the United Nations body charged with providing services there says are “characterized by overcrowding, […]
  • This international women’s day, meet your new colleague
    Aya* is a fullstack developer. She studied communications engineering in undergrad in Syria and launched into front-end programming, and then back-end programming in the few years since, shadowing more senior developers through a bootcamp and in her own family. In the same period, she lived through a war and fled one. Now, she’s in southern Türkiye, and had to leave this new home briefly too after last month’s destructive earthquake. She’s someone who smiles easily, who listens, who you know right away is a lightning-quick thinker. Some […]
  • Researcher from Afghanistan relocates to join McMaster University
    M.* is a researcher specialized in anthropology and archaeology in Afghanistan. Until the summer of 2021, she lectured undergraduates at Kabul University as an Assistant Professor. She and other staff and students were part of preserving culturally-significant sites like Gudri Mosque, and uncovering lessons from the past for contemporary urban design.  She began a master’s program in women and gender studies to better understand the role of women in Afghanistan since the Stone Age, but she had to leave that too, in July 2022, when she crossed […]
  • Ways to support people affected by earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria
    A major earthquake hit Türkiye close to the border with Syria during the morning of February 6 and severely impacted cities across both countries. Thousands of people have died and this terrible toll is likely to rise as recovery efforts continue.  Some of the larger cities impacted are Diyarbakir, Gaziantep and Iskenderun in Türkiye, and Aleppo and Hama in Syria. Members of our talent community and TalentLift team have loved ones in these areas experiencing loss or damage. We know many of our wider community do too. […]
  • Scotiabank invests $950,000 in TalentLift’s mission to support displaced talent worldwide
    A carpenter and his family arrived in Toronto to begin work with a furniture designer and manufacturer last week. They are from Syria and leave years spent living as refugees in Lebanon. This week, an archaeologist displaced from Afghanistan arrived for a research role, one she begins with a top university in Canada. A software developer is on his way to Vancouver next week, also from a refugee situation. All have skills needed by teams in Canada, and all are able to use their talent to leave […]
  • Happy holidays from the TalentLift community
    To advance on mobile, swipe left. Candidates living in refugee circumstances and seeking a job in Canada can join TalentLift. Employers seeking global talent while engaging their team in something transformative can start hiring.
  • Skilled visas get more seamless for displaced talent with IRCC’s trusted partner approach
    There can be a lot of steps in a skilled visa application, and we’re very happy to announce one less step for our candidates.  Talented people living in displacement globally qualify for jobs and skilled visas to Canada the same way as others do – but they can also access certain accommodations to overcome displacement-related barriers under the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP). These accommodations include use of an expired passport and use of a charitable loan for settlement funds. A change announced today by IRCC relates […]
  • Top 3 indicators of immigration fraud
    Canadian immigration fraud is an unfortunately common occurrence. So much so that the Canada government routinely issues warnings and has a whole section on their website on how to avoid fraud. As this is an ongoing issue, we are sharing our top 3 indications that a job or immigration offer may be too good to be true.  A job offer or a visa application that depends on payment to be successful Scammers are out to make money. One of the most effective strategies they deploy is to […]
  • Canadian hiring teams can “take a leap” in East Africa and beyond
    There are more than 27 million people living in refugee situations worldwide, and one third are living in countries in Africa.  We got a chance to hear from a few people in the East Africa region about their experience getting a job offer in Canada. Our team was in Nairobi at a meeting organized by the regional UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) team to raise awareness and share good practice on supporting talented folks to access job opportunities in Canada and beyond as a solution to their displacement. […]
  • From CUAET and other temporary status to permanence: Pathways to Canadian permanent residence
    A groundbreaking visa to respond to the displacement caused by war in Ukraine saw Canada welcome engineers, developers, sales professionals, graphic designers, truck drivers, parents, elderly parents, kids, and pets. Our team has been lucky enough to know some of them as they build their careers and community in Canada.    On March 17, 2022, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) released the Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel (CUAET) which enables Ukrainian nationals and their families to come to Canada as quickly as possible, while also providing them […]
  • A practical guide to building your strongest CV: Tips for displaced job seekers
    Building a strong CV is an essential part of putting your best foot forward to potential employers. It is a key way for you to clearly articulate how your skills and experience align with the employer’s requirements, allowing employers to easily visualize you in the role. It’s an opportunity to outline relevant experience, skills and achievements, while also telling employers a little bit about yourself and your personality. Using the following suggestions, we recommend building a standard CV that you can use widely but that you can […]
  • A global, diverse, extraordinary talent pool in displacement is in reach
    Employers recruiting with TalentLift have a global, diverse, extraordinary talent pool in reach. Our talent platform is a bridge between Canadian hiring teams and talented job seekers living in refugee circumstances globally.  For a long time, Canada’s skilled visas didn’t work for people living in refugee circumstances no matter how talented they were. Today, that’s changing. Canada has removed barriers like requiring a valid passport, which is impossible for people who can’t get one from a home government like Afghanistan or Syria, and requiring savings in a […]
  • Miles4Migrants advances equity for talented people living as refugees, with donated flights to new homes
    What does it mean to support talented people living in refugee circumstances to compete, on an equal footing with international talent from any other background, for job and skilled visa opportunities?  It means removing as many barriers as possible between Canadian teams and displaced job seekers, for a seamless recruitment and relocation experience.  For TalentLift, this has involved working alongside pioneering companies to design inclusive hiring processes; alongside governments to remove visa-related barriers under the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP); alongside the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and […]
  • Ontario gains a CNC Machinist from refugee circumstances in Libya
    “It gave me an opportunity that I’d never dreamed of,” Mulham said, about the job that brought him to Canada a few months ago.  Mulham is a talented carpenter from Syria who’s working as a CNC Machinist with a high-end furniture manufacturer in Ontario. He’s two months into his job and already performing as a core part of the creative team, relieving some pressure for a business and sector with an extreme shortage in skilled tradespeople.  Mulham was living as a refugee in Libya when he got […]
  • Start meeting job-seekers in refugee circumstances globally
    Dilruba, a Nurse pictured above, arrived in St. John’s a few weeks ago. She joined the team at a long-term care facility in a region facing an acute shortage of healthcare professionals. Dilruba is working again in her field, which has been her dream since she left Afghanistan for her safety and sought refuge in India. She said her first day at work was “absolutely amazing.”  Teams across Canada are supporting talented job-seekers like Dilruba to relocate alongside their families and rebuild their careers. Companies recruiting with […]
  • Rock musician entrepreneurs arrive from refugee circumstances to open their new music school in Canada
    There are photos of Ranim with children sitting at keyboards during a group lesson. Another photo shows her with one of her students, both smiling and giving a peace sign. She looks happy and the kids look at home with her. Ranim and Adnan taught music together for eight years at their school in Homs, Syria, that they built.  The war began in Syria in 2011 but they stayed with their students, and stopped charging money for those badly impacted by war. This was their home, where […]
  • The optimism of skills-based mobility greets UNHCR High Commissioner Filippo Grandi in Toronto
    Durid is a Maintenance Technician and he and his spouse are working in a Southern Ontario community where their skills are in high demand, and where their daughter can go to school. Anas is a Software Engineer on a Waterloo-based team that has grown four times in size during the pandemic. Kinaz will soon relocate to British Columbia to join a healthcare employer providing critical in-home care. All three were displaced from their homes and careers due to conflict before getting jobs and pursuing skilled visas to […]
  • Canada’s swift visa for Ukrainians is open. TalentLift is here to support you.
    Canada is welcoming Ukrainians displaced by war through a new and swift visa. Under the Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel (CUAET), applicants who are Ukrainian nationals may apply for a visitor visa and open work permit, and then relocate to Canada.  How it works This visa pathway is open to any Ukrainian national. Applicants apply online for a visitor visa and have the option to apply for an open work permit which will allow them to work for any employer in Canada. CUAET applicants have the following […]
  • Canada aims high in welcoming more talented candidates and their families from refugee circumstances in latest immigration plan
    Canada released its first immigration plan since the disruption of the Covid-19 pandemic today. It highlights the country’s priorities for the coming three years, including welcoming more newcomers into in-demand work from refugee circumstances under the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP). The EMPP was first trialled as a smallscale pilot in 2018 to support people living as refugees to access job and skilled visa opportunities on a more level field with other international applicants, as a critical new mobility option that is additional and complementary to resettlement. […]
  • Webinar: Diversify to Include Top Tech Talent from Refugee Sources
    Innovative Canadian tech companies are recruiting from the immense tech talent in refugee populations worldwide. Learn about this growing opportunity from the executives of leading companies, and the transformative impacts for candidates and the teams welcoming them to Canada. Canadian tech companies have an enormous opportunity to lead the world in recruiting from an underleveraged talent pool of tech candidates living as refugees globally. This win-win recruitment initiative helps companies find and retain essential tech skills outside of stretched local markets, while enabling new employees and their […]
  • Insights from our practice interview volunteers on supporting candidates in refugee circumstances to put their best foot forward
    Job interviews are hard for everyone. Most Canadians tense up just thinking about the mix of preparation, pressure, hope, and uncertainty they entail. Now, imagine if a job interview could unlock the chance to move yourself and your family from an extremely difficult place to a new home and future in Canada; if this job meant a life-changing relocation. Imagine too that this remote interview will be in your non-native language. Imagine you’re stressed about the regular electricity outages interrupting your call. Imagine your family is listening […]
  • Software engineer from refugee circumstances joins ApplyBoard on Canada’s top work permit for tech talent
    When he heard he got the job, Anas felt deep pride in himself. He had worked towards this goal for five years. It was late but he messaged his Dad, who’s still living in Syria. At each milestone, Anas would call his parents almost right away.  That was in the summer, when ApplyBoard, one of Canada’s tech unicorns, offered him a job as a software engineer in Canada, and Anas’ plane landed in Toronto on December 30. A job and a visa to Canada mean something different […]
  • Canada’s EMPP is open to support skilled immigration by displaced talent
    Canada’s groundbreaking pilot supporting talented people living as refugees to apply to economic immigration streams is now open. As of today, people living in refugee circumstances can submit job-backed permanent residence applications through the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP). The EMPP extends some flexibility to address administrative and financial requirements that have previously been a barrier to otherwise highly qualified applicants. Skilled immigration is an additional mobility option for those seeking a durable solution outside of traditional humanitarian resettlement.  Talented candidates in refugee circumstances can now apply […]
  • Hack the hiring process to recruit tech talent in refugee circumstances
    A new ‘Guide on Redesigning the Tech Hiring Process to Include Displaced Talent’ is a collaboration by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Refugee Action Hub, Na’amal, TalentLift, the Tent Partnership for Refugees, and World Education Services, with sponsorship by World Education Services. Download the guide.  The tech sector needs talent, and people living and working in tech within refugee populations need livelihood opportunities. This guide of practical ideas aims to help teams design their hiring process to more successfully recruit displaced talent.  The talent gap across the […]
  • How hiring teams in Canada can support displaced Afghans
    More than 2.6 million Afghans have left the country in search of refuge and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) expects this number to grow in the coming months. Many of those who are in refugee circumstances in neighbouring countries are professionals, tradespeople, recent graduates, or parents, all eager for an opportunity to put their skills to use and contribute in a new home community. Hiring teams across Canada can be part of the solution by extending job and skilled visa opportunities to talented Afghans and others displaced […]
  • ScotiaRISE invests $400,000 in TalentLift to help job seekers in refugee circumstances find work and settle in Canada
    Mulham can build almost any wooden furniture and home decor. A baby crib with flowers carved into the headboard, a staircase, high-backed chairs, and a low coffee table with patterned sides are pictured in his portfolio. His skills are prized in Canada where tradespeople are in critical shortage and are needed to drive growth in sectors like construction and manufacturing. Mulham has a job offer with a furniture designer and manufacturer in Ontario. With TalentLift’s support, he applied for the job from outside Canada and is waiting […]
  • TalentLift’s Rui Chen appointed advisor to new Law Society of Ontario Access to Innovation project
    We are excited to share that Rui Chen, TalentLift’s founding Chief Technology Officer, will serve as an advisor to the Law Society of Ontario’s five-year project to explore innovative approaches to legal services delivery. The Access to Innovation (“A2I”) project will allow the LSO to assess the potential benefits of novel legaltech services. It is likely to catalyze the creation of new forms of legal services delivery by creating a space for dialogue between service providers and the LSO. Enabled by technology and an adaptive regulatory body, […]
  • What’s new for Canada’s displaced talent pilot
    Canada’s groundbreaking pilot supporting talented people living as refugees to apply to economic immigration streams has an important set of new rules. Phase one of the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP), launched in 2018, successfully demonstrated that displaced talent can more equitably apply if administrative or financial barriers are removed, enabling them to make significant contributions to the national economy and the communities where they and their families arrive to put down roots. Last week, the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship released details for phase two […]
  • A displaced talent strategy in Canada’s federal party platforms
    Canada has an unprecedented opportunity to leverage its full range of immigration options to support displaced talent. We didn’t have the policy tools or supporting infrastructure in place during past humanitarian security crises, like the displacement unfolding from Afghanistan’s borders, that have moved Canadians to contribute. But we do now.  Canada has pioneered efforts to open skilled visas to applicants living in refugee circumstances under the Economic Mobility Pathways Project (EMPP). The pilot helps applicants overcome some of the displacement-related barriers they might face despite their skills […]
  • Ways for Canadians to support Afghans
    A number of friends and colleagues have reached out asking us for ways to support Afghans. Below are some ideas on how Canadians can support those in need during a rapidly changing situation.  If you have the ability to donate:  FOCUS Humanitarian Assistance Our partners at FOCUS Humanitarian Assistance work with Afghans both inside and outside the country who have been displaced by conflict and other disasters. FOCUS undertakes resettlement programmes for displaced families and extended relief and recovery support for communities living in vulnerable environments. Donate […]
  • Watch: TalentLift’s Veronica Wilson discusses innovation in immigration practice with the Canadian Bar Association
    Good people power good organizations.  Veronica Wilson, TalentLift’s co-founder and Legal Director, joined Emily Lukaweski in a webinar hosted by the Canadian Bar Association on “TalentLift: Innovation in the Practice of Immigration and Law.” Veronica spoke about her journey in immigration law that led her to co-founding TalentLift, Canada’s first non-profit talent agency offering in-house visa services that focuses exclusively on supporting employers to recruit and relocate talent from within refugee populations. In just six months of start-up work, Veronica has developed TalentLift into a Civil Society […]
  • Minister Mendicino announces latest steps to redesign skilled visas for talent in displacement
    Canada is redesigning skilled immigration pathways to include talented applicants living in refugee circumstances worldwide. New steps announced today send a signal that as Canada welcomes record numbers of skilled newcomers to grow our companies and communities, this country will deliberately include the immense talent within refugee populations.  Marco Mendicino, the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, signaled a more inclusive skilled immigration system under the federal pilot Economic Mobility Pathways Project (EMPP), which aims to improve access to Canada’s skilled visas.  He spoke alongside Mohammed Hakmi, […]
  • Decoding tech recruiting for international talent
    The culture surrounding tech recruiting can be mystifying when first experienced. Why does one resume generate many calls from recruiters, while another with similar experience languishes? How do you answer questions like, “Tell me about a time a project failed?” And how are you supposed to code on a (now virtual) whiteboard when someone is watching you? If this culture is challenging for candidates in North America, even with coaching from their schools and private courses, it can seem impenetrable to those with tech experience in other […]
  • Ontario breaks new ground with refugee-inclusive design in skilled immigration system
    Ontario recently updated its intake system for prospective skilled immigrants with a design tweak that enables the province to conduct targeted draws for applicants who are both skilled and living in refugee circumstances. It may be the first example of refugee-inclusive design in the development of a Canadian skilled immigration system.  The new “expression of interest” (EOI) system in the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program, used to nominate people who have skills needed by the Ontario economy, asks all applicants to register a profile to determine eligibility and […]
  • TalentLift pioneers visa services for displaced talent as a Civil Society Organization with the Law Society of Ontario
    TalentLift supports Canadian employers to find and relocate talent from within refugee populations, and is the first non-profit talent agency of its kind to offer clients in-house visa services. We achieved registration as a Civil Society Organization with the Law Society of Ontario this month.   The Law Society of Ontario introduced a new Civil Society Organization status in April 2019 to make lawyer and paralegal services more accessible to the public. It enables lawyers and paralegals to provide their direct professional services as employees of charities and […]
  • In the News: Here’s one way Canada can help displaced Latin American workers
    Canada can immediately and actively share responsibility by offering displaced people across Latin America safe passage through access to programs for skilled immigrants, Craig Damian Smith of Ryerson University and Dana Wagner of TalentLift explain in an opinion piece published in the Globe and Mail. They argue that better access to work permits would revolutionize mobility opportunities to Canada for displaced talent worldwide – including for those living displaced in Canada’s own hemisphere. Further reading:  Policy Brief: How Canada can Address Skills Shortages by Improving Access to […]
  • Policy brief on opening Canada’s skilled visas as a solution to displacement in Latin America
    Displacement crises are unfolding across Latin America as people cross borders to seek safety from oppression, violence and environmental disaster. The number of Venezuelans alone who have fled their homes is approaching the scale of displacement caused by the war in Syria. They and others from across Central America are in neighbouring countries, often without work and decent living conditions, or making dangerous onward journeys. More than one million people are expected to seek safety at the American border this year.  A significant Canadian contribution to this […]
  • Reimagining relocation to Canada, where access depends on potential and not privilege
    A software developer landed in Toronto in March 2019, greeted by his new team members from a tech firm in Kitchener. Months later a chef arrived who would start working in Mississauga, and next came an engineer headed for Niagara Falls.  In a few more months, a healthcare employer from Pictou County would return from a recruitment mission overseas having made job offers to 13 nurses. A manufacturer from Collingwood did the same, returning after hiring 11 engineers.  All these stories of recruitment and relocation are ordinary, […]
  • The colour came back
    Nawar Alkhaleel paints in the morning and only in sunlight when each detail she brings to life is most visible. She begins with the eyes. The face, hair and posture that form a portrait in her mind extend on the page from there.  Her portraits are women built by colour, and their gaze, when it finds you, is difficult to break. It took Nawar just one week to finish her first portrait after arriving in Canada in January 2020. She and her family landed in Toronto on […]