Newcomer Support Services

Settlement Services For Youth

Settlement workers are placed in elementary and secondary schools that have high numbers of newcomer students.

    • proactively contacts newcomer parents and students
    • refers to more specialized community resources, as needed
    • provides group information sessions, often in partnership with school staff
    • orients school staff about the settlement needs of newcomers
    • coordinates the Newcomer Orientation Week (NOW) which provides orientation to newly-arrived high school students. Over three and-a-half days in the last week of the summer, the students are oriented to their school by Peer Leaders-students who were newcomers in recent years. Topics include the curriculum, rules & school procedures, graduation requirements, ESL & guidance counsellors, timetables, extra-curricular activities and using their locker.
    • Welcome and Information for Newcomers (WIN) program helps newcomer teens entering middle school (grades 6-8). WIN uses some of the same programming elements as NOW but is one day instead of four. Peer leaders are also central to WIN, helping demonstrate elements in the program and to build friendships with the newcomer students.

In 2012‒2013, the Settlement Workers in Schools program served
10,300 clients in 645 group activities.
278 clients attended Newcomer Orientation Week in high schools.
94 clients attended Welcome and Information for Newcomers program in middle schools.

In 2013-2014: 13,062 new clients, and 619 workshops with 19,550 participants
In 2013-2014: 311 high school youth attended NOW
In 2013-2014: 72 middle school children attended WIN


The NOW program was truly a phenomenal experience for me. First I was a participant learning my way around Marc Garneau CI. Settlement Workers, Teachers and Peer Leaders helped me adjust showing me how to use a lock for my locker, navigating my way around the school-the stamps on my NOW passport show that I knew the school and where to go for information. We also learned about our new community and services that are offered, the school rules and how to access after school programs and homework help, even how to graduate and move on to higher education. We received the encouragement to be whoever we wanted to be!

As a 2012 Peer Leader I got the opportunity to mentor newcomers to Canada; support and integrate them into the Canadian system. This program helped to pave my way to getting a job. It gave the appropriate skills needed ranging from interpersonal skills to organizational skills. TNO Youth Centre held a job fair for Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park and I felt I had gained a lot of experience during NOW that I wanted to try my luck. I attended an interview at TNO’s Employment Centre for the position of Cashier and I got the job a week later. The training I got for the job was great. In a short amount of time I have adapted to the job very well, and it feels great to actually have a part time job. It seems like this is my life’s “good times” for only weeks after I got the job I was nominated for Kathleen Wynne’s 4th Annual Community Volunteer Service Award. A week later I got to know that I won it! I have always loved volunteering in my community, and to get awarded for that is such a blessing. My experiences with the NOW program, getting my first real job and being awarded the Volunteer Service Award has been milestone after milestone in my life. And for that, I thank a remarkable mentor, Malika Shah, Settlement Worker at Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute.

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