FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Vancouver, BC – On June 17, our Canadian Airport Newcomers Network (CANN) program members greeted 313 Afghan arrivals – including two newborns just a few days old – to the province at Vancouver International Airport (YVR).
Working collaboratively with YVR, Musqueam nation, Canadian Border Services Agency and Public Health Agency of Canada, the CANN team was able to get the group through arrivals processes in record time – just over two hours. Over the next few days, the teams supported those destined to other provinces and of the arrivals, 167 have been staying at a hotel where our settlement team has been helping them complete paperwork and open bank accounts. Health care has been provided by Life Labs conducting COVID tests, and Vancouver Coastal Health nurses providing wellness checks and immunization clinics.
Our CANN program, established in 1992, celebrates 30 years of operations at the Vancouver International Airport (YVR) this year. In its history, CANN has helped more than a million newcomers orient and adjust to life in B.C. The program continues to expand. In 2022 alone, the CANN program has welcomed more than 1,700 Afghans, including the arrival of 209 Afghans in January, and we’ve been providing orientation, assistance with transportation and referrals to services. To date, Canada has welcomed more than 16,000 Afghan refugees to the country.
In addition, CANN has begun overseeing welcome, orientation and settlement of Ukraine arrivals at the airport on July 1, following handover from the Canadian Red Cross. We have been hiring additional Ukrainian-speaking staff to support our expanding operations both at the airport and in several key service areas. To date, our teams have assisted more than 300 Ukrainian clients with settlement services, including school registrations, obtaining medical insurance coverage and work permits, arranging housing, and referring them to WorkBC career services.
Our settlement teams have also been seeing increased service demand from Ukrainian arrivals. We have been supported by both the federal and provincial governments to hire additional Ukrainian-speaking staff to support this client group. We have additional settlement workers, dedicated supports at the temporary hotel accommodations, as well as point-of-entry services. These additional resources will aid in meeting the client demands and assisting in faster settlement and integration outcomes.
For more information
Director, Strategic Communications and Partnerships
Founded in 1973, S.U.C.C.E.S.S. is one of the largest social service agencies in Canada. Our multicultural, non-profit charitable organization offers a wide range of programs and services that promote the belonging, wellness, and independence of people at all stages of their Canadian journey. Programs and services are offered in the areas of newcomer settlement, English language training, employment and entrepreneurship, family, youth and seniors programming, health education, community development, seniors care and affordable housing. Learn more at successbc.ca.