As we venture into September, things at Westman Immigrant Services begin to get busy and we enter into the full swing of our programming. Here is a list of upcoming events.
We are partnering with other community organizations (Canadian Red Cross, KidSport, Brandon Police Service, Assiniboine Community College and UFCW) to provide a Newcomers Physical Activity Expo, that takes place today from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at ACC. The event is facilitated by Healthy Living and gives a good exposure to children.
We have also planned to provide a workshop focused on Funding for Education in October. We have anticipated that the workshop will provide relevant information to clients who are interested in taking some training and becoming more competent in an area of interest.
We are continuing our involvement in the Global Market, which will continue into October, weather permitting. There are still many great activities planned for the market. Be sure to check it out at globalmarketbrandon.com.
We will be hosting a series of Cultural Cafés this fall. They will include roundtables, speakers and workshops in a friendly environment open to the community. The idea is to facilitate cultural understanding and integration.
We will be organizing community cooking lessons to give those participants in the International Women’s Food and Craft Market the opportunity to continue learning food safe practices and to maintain the interest of the community.
For the youth, we will be running youth sports activities on weekends and an after-school program on weekdays.
According to the feedback from those attending our summer programs, they want more sport activities, especially outdoor ones. We will be running a session of sport activities (once a week, around eight to 10 weeks) to provide youth an opportunity to get exposed to Canadian sports, like hockey, as well as to make new friends. It will be easier for youth to fit in new surroundings if they have new hobbies and new friends.
In addition to friendship and fun activities, English skills development will be an essential key to help them successfully settle and integrate into Canadian society. Therefore, a 10-week after school program (at least two days a week) for the immigrant youth (12 to 17 years old) will be held this fall.
Our adult English classes start on Monday. We are offering daytime classes Monday through Thursday in the mornings and early afternoons, evening classes two times a week and Saturday morning classes for levels one to four.
We are adding two special classes this year. One is an EAL literacy class for level 2 to 3 students who have listening and speaking skills that are stronger than their reading and writing skills. This class will help to strengthen those weaker skills.
We are also offering a computer literacy class on Tuesday and Thursday evenings for those who wish to develop better computer skills in English so that they may use computers to study English. This class is for level 3 and 4 students.
The Welcome Here Program begins on Sept. 25 at Central United Church. This EAL/Family Literacy program allows families with preschool-aged children to participate in an English program that promotes family literacy and offers the parents an English class while their children play under the care of on-site child-minders. The Welcome Here Program is on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons from 1 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.
For those very new to Brandon, we are offering the Brandon ENTRY program that provides orientation to Brandon and Manitoba by providing information about services in Brandon, health care in Manitoba, employment and education, and basic laws.
Every week, presenters provide information through interpreters to ensure that the information is understood by participants.
The ENTRY program runs for a four-week period from 11:45 a.m. to 2:15 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Anyone wishing to join classes should come to Westman Immigrant Services to register.
If you are interested in any of the above activities, or would like more information, please contact the office at 204-727-6031.
» Leslie Allen is the executive director of Westman Immigrant Services. Her column appears monthly.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition September 8, 2012