OCASI has successfully managed the Professional Education and Training (PET) project for over 16 years. The program which is supported by Immigration Refugee and citizenship Canada was initiated by OCASI in 2000 with the main objective of providing professional development and training for settlement workers, with a view to increasing skills, knowledge and capacity to deliver client services.
In 2007-08 the project was broadened to include all staff funded under the Newcomer Settlement Program of the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration (MCI), as well as specific positions within the ELT and LINC programs. In 2010 it was also expanded to include staff who are hired to coordinate Local Immigration Partnerships (LIPs)
Goal: The project is to improve services for immigrant communities by addressing gaps in skills and knowledge of service providers through provision of financial resources for the agencies and their staff to access existing or tailor-made training by community-based training organizations, designed to enhance organizational capacity and knowledge sharing in an effort to enhancing the quality of services delivered to newcomers.
Under the PET project, assistance is available to all immigrant services organizations funded by Immigration Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC to undertake In-house Group Training. An eligible agency may apply for up to $2500 to cover facilitator’s fee. The funding for In-House training DOES NOT cover accommodation, transportation, meals or refreshments. PET does not pay an organization to facilitate their own training (as their own training provider), and will not pay an organization for a ‘subject’ of which it is an expert.
OCASI offers support to agencies which are funded to provide the above mentioned programs may apply for and, if approved, be reimbursed for designed training to enhance organizational capacity and knowledge sharing.
The PET program will finance group training offerings throughout this fiscal year, plus, new e-learning modules on Serving Youth in Newcomer Communities.This course is developed to address the settlement sector employees’ needs in these areas. Facilitator-led modules will be offered again this fiscal year.
In 2012 Violence Against Women: Understanding and Responding to Women Abuse: The PET delivered 2/8-week facilitated e-learning training on this topic. 30 participants enrolled, 20 completed the training successfully. It started on October 9, 2012 and ended on December 7. This training can still be taken online, but is not facilitated.