This month the Halifax Immigrant Learning Centre (HILC) and the Metropolitan Immigrant Settlement Association (MISA) join forces under a new name – Immigrant Settlement and Integration Services (ISIS).
The purpose of the merger is to integrate the language and content of MISA’s settlement services with HILC’s education programs.
“We have delivered services together for the past six years and now the administrative side is catching up with the service-delivery side,” said Gerry Mills, director of operations at ISIS. “Putting the work units together into one entity makes our offerings more deliberate. We will be able to deliver a more holistic service to our clients.”
The Halifax Immigrant Learning Centre served over 900 newcomers a year while this year alone MISA opened 2,000 new files. The immigrants came from over 90 countries with the top three being China, Iran and Afghanistan.
The ISIS director of operations said that five or six years ago, 65 per cent of immigrants left Nova Scotia. “Now, due to increased government funding and the additional programs and services that are available for immigrants, 67 per cent are staying in the province.”
For those newcomers registered in ISIS’s Work in Nova Scotia (WINS) work placement program, 80 per cent find work in their profession or a related field within six months, Mills said.
To view the ISIS website, go to http://www.isisns.ca.