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Feb 28, 2023
GBLIP Partners with World Education Services to Find Solutions to the Skills Shortage
GBLIP Logo with text: #ImmigrantWorks Phase 2 New Community Partner

Communities across Canada are struggling to find the talent they need. With the labour force expected to be close to 100 percent dependent on immigration to fuel growth, the communities’ need for immigrant talent has never been greater.

In response to the ongoing Canadian labour crisis, World Education Services has launched #ImmigrantsWork to work with community partners in mobilizing local employers to co-design solutions that help identify, recruit, hire, and retain local immigrant talent. Building on the successes and learnings from a pilot phase, World Education Services (WES) has selected the Grey Bruce Local Immigration Partnership as one of five communities across Canada that will join the second phase of the #ImmigrantsWork initiative.

“We know that there has never been a greater need for scalable localized solutions that harness immigrant skills,” said WES Managing Director Shamira Madhany. “Communities in rural and northern Canada are particularly affected. That’s why we are so delighted to pursue these new partnerships with these communities.”

“The Grey Bruce Local Immigration Partnership is excited to be selected for the 2023–2024 #ImmigrantsWork program,” said GBLIP Coordinator Deepikaa Gupta. “Under the leadership and expertise of World Education Services, GBLIP will implement community-driven solutions, mobilize resources, and effectively support local employers in addressing barriers to hiring and retaining immigrant talent across Grey and Bruce Counties.” 

In November 2022, WES launched a call for expressions of interest (EoI) for the second phase of #ImmigrantsWork and in response received more than a dozen submissions from organizations representing communities all over Canada. Applicants had to meet certain criteria, including:

  • Direct experience working with local employers, including small and medium-sized enterprises
  • Ties to a network of strong, locally engaged partners and stakeholders
  • Inclusion of immigrant- and refugee-led organizations  

About the #ImmigrantsWork Initiative 

In late 2021, WES identified three pilot communities: the Regional Municipality of Waterloo, the Regional Municipality of Durham, and Greater Moncton. The first phase of the #ImmigrantsWork pilot program was successfully completed in 2022, resulting in the launch of Employer Playbook: Strategies for Immigrant Inclusion in Canadian Workplaces, a digitized and localized employer resource that was well received by employers and workforce development stakeholders across the pilot communities. 

The upcoming phase of #ImmigrantsWork will sustain the momentum and build on the success of the earlier phase, testing the program in new communities that have different needs and capacities.

“The #ImmigrantsWork program reinforces WES’ commitment to addressing workforce shortages through an innovative community engagement initiative, anchored in collective action to drive systemic change in Canada’s labour market,” said WES Managing Director Shamira Madhany. “Insights gained throughout the work with local employers and communities will further enrich WES’ policy and programmatic work with national business associations and will have a long-lasting impact on immigration and labour policy.”

Interested in learning more about #ImmigrantsWork? Please see the case study paper that outlines the pilot projects’ key concepts and operational details. 

About World Education Services 

World Education Services (WES) is a non-profit social enterprise dedicated to helping international students, immigrants, and refugees achieve their educational and career goals in the United States and Canada. For more than 45 years, WES has set the standard of excellence in the field of international academic credential evaluation. Through WES Global Talent Bridge, the organization joins with institutional partners, community-based organizations, and policymakers to help immigrants and refugees who hold international credentials fully utilize their talents and education to achieve their academic and professional goals. Through its grantmaking, impact investing, and partnerships, the WES Mariam Assefa Fund seeks to advance economic and social inclusion for immigrants and refugees.

Click here to contact GBLIP for more information about the #ImmigrantsWork project.