SERVICES/IMMIGRATION AND REFUGEE
SERVICES Newcomer/Refugee/Asylum seeker Integration Services Referral services Family and children/Youth Counseling Family Conflict Services Accompanying Services Interpretation and Translation services Entertainment and Volunteer Services Advocacy, Research, Survey and Consulting Child care and cleaning services Out-reach, Feeding and Care giving NEW-COMERS, ASYLUM SEEKERS AND REFUGEES” YOUTH CONNECTIONS ENGAGEMENT AND SERVICES. When Families, Youth and Children arrive in Canada as Refugees/New-comers, they face many challenges that make it hard to feel that they are connected or belong to their communities as Empowered Leaders. Arriving in Canada on it's own is challenging; new Language, Cultures, Culture-Shock, Food, Lifestyle and Unfamiliar territory that makes it difficult to navigate. Newcomers (particularly refugees from war torn and poorest countries, asylum seekers and war resisters) to this country struggles before and after their arrival, it's complex and challenging to make meaningful changes before settling in the new country. They feel more comfortable and secure during the transitioning period when they have the people they put their trust in who support them, who understand and share their culture, language, food and history. Supporting them to connect to their neighbours and new friends is AGL's primary goal for belonging and inclusion to build a stronger community.
Family and Child/Youth Counselling
Family conflict , Children and Youth struggle with complex issues brought on by peers, mentors, family members, and difficult social environments. When viewing the indications of their resilience, optimism and leadership, we realize that resilience is more common among second generation immigrant youth in form of a rediscovery of their ethnicity. At AGL these group of children/youth and families are supported to navigate and access services and support. We support them referring them to medical care, and the use the wisdom of the elders from communities to support family counselling during family conflicts, where children/youth experience difficulties or challenges. We identify their needs that include Academic support, Mental illnesses, right to education, rights to play, Voices of children, be included and empowered Mental illnesses can affect kids and teens just as with adults, from all family types and cultural backgrounds. Some situations include: • New immigrants and refugees • Young people who have faced or witnessed trauma, including abuse • Young people who’ve gone through a major life change such as moving to a new city or new school • Young people with substance use problems • Young people with a family history of mental illness • Aboriginal children and youth • Gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender youth
We Provide Information and Referral Services for individuals and families to other Agencies Government Departments or and Community Centres etc.
A number of new priorities are being addressed in keeping with Africa Great Lakes Networking Foundation (AGL) strategic plan for 2017 2020. The plans are being developed based on the input received from the response of the two days Pan African carnival, Parade and Dialogue survey. The programs and services we provide to the community are and will continue to be the result of the hard work of the Volunteer Board. We will be deepening our connections with different communities and other stakeholders to develop other new programs and services making changes to the existing ones, stay tuned for the invitations to share the ideas. If you are interested in creating positive change in your community, AGL is a great place to get involved and volunteer, making this organization work requires your talents, skills, experience and energy, together we make or communities stronger and celebrate our diversity and strength. Outreach program is a community connections Program: We engage in outreach for educational and information dissemination, it is an activity to provide services to community members who are not otherwise able to access some services for some different reasons. A key component here, we are not stationary, but mobile; in other words we meet the people in need of outreach services at the locations where those in need are. We reach out to help teach conversation English, teaching about Peace and Conflict Resolution, Social Justice, Leadership, Capacity building, involving them to participate. We unite families with volunteers and their new community members including them in participation and decision making, they practice Canadian English to gain communication skills allowing them to learn more about Canadian customs, beliefs and idioms, for individual growth, goal setting and goal reaching, sharing and working towards overcoming challenges, building new relationships, friendships, new connections, participate in physical activities, gaining teamwork skills development, sportsmanship, problems solving skills and Peace and justice. We Created Council of Elders to support: Family Counseling - (Family therapy)— At AGL we help families involving group of elders from communities who use wisdom to solve any conflict affecting families. We do not overlook any contributions that may help us to understand the phenomena surrounding conflict, its origins and its transformation. In traditional African societies, the law enforcement agents, traditional police and courts were responsible for ensuring compliance with the laws of the land. Disputants often take their cases to elders and neighborhoods mediators who are depended upon to resolve conflicts with dispatch in local language, using familiar standard of behavior. We borrow the "Yoruba's " example of family conflict resolution.
We work with individuals and families in their communities to meet the changing needs of an ageing population; persons with disability and new comers. We believe that older persons, persons with disabilities and new-comers deserve to a fully and meaningfully participation that contribute to the social and economic fabric of communities; With numerous social and economic benefits to build communities that are inclusive and meets the changing needs of residents as they age; as they inclusively access and participate and as they smoothly integrate into their society. We encouraged active participation, we support, promote and work to assess and improve accessibility and inclusion of older persons, persons with disabilities, new-comers and the community as a whole.
Interpretation and Translation services
We work with the new-comer, refugees and those in need of our Swahili language program, we inter-prate and translate in support of mostly the new-comers from the African Great Lakes Region.
Volunteer and Entertainment Services
We provide services for no financial gain, our volunteering is renowned for skill development, and intended to promote goodness or to improve human quality of life. We give our time to a good cause, getting the chance to use our talents, develop new skills, and experience the pleasure that comes from making a real difference to other people's lives, as well as our own. Anyone whatever age, background or work experience has a skill that someone else needs. No matter how busy we are, there will be something that we can together do. You might be interested in working on the 'front line' or perhaps you’d be happier 'behind the scenes'; either way, there’s something for each one of us. Join us by applying. Watoto Fusion Dance Group, entertains communities with African traditional dance, African Fashion show, African Drums and African Storytelling, get to know them and help build relationships, through dancing, poems as children are empowered while using their voices.
Consultation, Advocacy, Research and Survey
Consultation: With the other Agencies our partners we carry out different consultation services Advocacy: We advocate and teach community self advocacy The Community Advocacy is our peer-run project where members of our community provide information, referrals, and general assistance to fellow community members particularly youth. All services are strictly confidential. We too help with: Immigration, Refugee & Settlement Services Housing – referring refugees and the abused to safe housing Refer for Legal Issues, Accessing Health Care, Community Action Training Clothing, Furniture, etc from our partners –Community in Need Society Our Community Action Program - Empowers community members experiencing poverty and marginalization to challenge chronic income and food insecurity by facilitating stronger community support networks, raising political consciousness, and taking direct action. Research: We believe that Community Base Research creates Socio-cultural, Economic and Environmental benefit for all, brings together key players of communities and partnerships. Our network builds capacity for the broader communities to collaborate and use Research as a tool to mobilize, involve the participation of communities and action. Survey: Carry out different surveys in communities we we work in to support our programs
Children and Youth education and outreach
Combining Skills Link and Skills gap In a context of record levels of young peoples's unemployment in Canada, we seek to encourage formal and non-formal learning, focusing the non-formal learning especially for young people to enhance the creative and innovative capacities. It goes beyond identifying the skills and competences involved, to present illustrative examples of practice and cross-sectoral cooperation. In arguing that investment in non-formal learning pays economic and social dividends, it is important that we keep in mind that young people are more than just a potential workforce, and should not be perceived only in the context of their situation in the labour market. Among young people are potential philosophers, artists, writers, environmentalists, entrepreneurs, sports/craftsmen and women – people who create, who constitute and who continue supporting Canada’s culturally rich and unique traditions. We seek to increase the support of young people's current situation of buriers to employment, we need to see the increased investment in Canada’s human and cultural capital. There is need to improve and widen the recognition of non-formal learning, and not just in training but to employability. A better equipped workforce is required; one that can interact effectively with young people, especially those who are disadvantaged and lack access to the jobs market. The workers need an improved curriculum, and an investment in training, to stimulate the innovative and creative capacities. They need access to commonly accepted recognition tools and to improved practices that will be used in their own social and cultural contexts, which is what we value most. Youth educational resource focuses on four key components on Skills gap • Education: The informal learning opportunities that support current skill sets and accelerates future development. • Expectations: Recommendations for a career level that sets the standard for creating a development plan. • Experiences: On-the-job opportunities that professionals should gain during their tenure at a current level. • Exposure: A recommended list of career relationships that foster career development. YOUT SKILLS TRAINING • Career planning • Life Skills • Job Search Skills • Workplace Communication • Employability Skills • Leadership skills • Basic interpersonal communicative skills • Critical thinking • Emotional literacy • Empathy • Life skills • Life skills-based education • People skills • Social intelligence • Social skills • Vocational skills • 1st Aid/CPR • WHMAS • FoodSafe • Goal Setting • Self Assessment We educate, enrich and empower our youth through “Youth life skills program” we seek to promotes the collaborations and partnerships between employers, training institutions (e.g. colleges and universities), business development organizations, education Ministry, other departments, City of Vancouver’s School Board, local agencies, professionals, Employers in private sector in Solving and addressing today’s Skills gaps. At all levels, we collaborate with different sectors and stakeholders and come together to provide a supportive environment for the work, pushing to encourage more incentives and initiatives needed to galvanise the social partners for effective interaction. Through our best practices, our organizational strategies, and case studies we help solve the skill gap puzzle. In many ways, solving a skill gap is like solving a puzzle—not only do we have to make the pieces fit, we make sure to have all the necessary pieces from the get-go, that includes a list of the required skills and competencies for each job role, assessment of what we have versus what we need, identifying high performers and best practices, necessary training, and measurement of the results. With the continued emergence of new technologies and new business needs, we at AGL recognizes that the skills required to succeed tomorrow are not the same as the skills required to succeed today. Where once it sought to establish skill benchmarks based on the success of the past, it now seeks to anticipate the benchmarks of the future, and plan development proactively. We designed and established a general skills framework to promote balanced development, and ensure that at every stage of a career, a youth builds a blend of technical, business, and leadership skills. But which specific skills within that framework are most critical? We develop the creative and innovative potential of young people through non-formal learning in ways that are relevant to employability. We Support through to converse and or communicate English language, Mathematical competence and basic competences in science and technology, digital competence, learning to learn, social and civic competences, sense of initiative, entrepreneurship, cultural awareness, competence and expression. Looking at offering various interpretations of the skills needed in the labour market. The core concepts alternate between ‘employability’, ‘soft skills’, ‘transversal skills’, ‘life skills’ or even individual characteristics and traits. Closing the gap: Non-formal learning and labour market requirements, there is a significant problem when it comes to translating the outcomes of non-formal learning into an active jobs culture, and there is a challenge to close the divide in understanding between the labour market and soft skills are increasingly sought out by employers in addition to standard qualifications. It is important; that we advocate and encourage bringing together the social partners is for the most vulnerable youth. ” We make every effort to ensure as many young people with disabilities, or health problems as possible are in employment, to minimise risks of future inactivity and social exclusion.
Community Outreach/Liaison programs/Services: We provide services to those who might not otherwise have access to the services in communities. Meeting them at the locations where those in needs are. We are dedicated supporting and improving the living standards of those in communities by motivating, inspiring and providing information and directions. Our programs are geared toward the knowledge which is power" that represents opportunities and connections, with the following objectives: To provide such assistance that is within the capability of AGL in order to meet the participant's physical and psychological needs, and to prepare them to take full responsibility for their own lives and welfare; To take cognizance of actual situation and needs; To instil deeper sense of services; promote cleanliness, health and environment awareness, developing social values, responsibilities and opportunities. FEEDING Although Canada is one of the richest countries in the world, child and family homelessness is a serious and growing issue. More than 37% of Canadian households are having difficulty maintaining housing and more and more families are relying on emergency shelters. Between 2005 and 2009, the estimated number of children using those shelters grew from 6,205 to 9,459. This does not include those who stayed in violence against women shelters or ‘hidden homeless’. Homelessness is tough on each one of us, particularly children and families. As the foundation of our communities and our country, families must have basic standard of living, ensuring that all children the Refugees, New-comers, the Aboriginal have safe and the best possible start in life for future society. At AGL we believe that by educating communities, to learn from and share innovative community-based work, develops a practical planning framework to be a solution for homelessness. We make a difference when feeding those in need, we curry out feeding program that runs once a month on Hastings and Columbia Street in DTES Vancouver and or at “The Door is open” - 255 Dunlevy Avenue, Vancouver, BC V6A 3A5, we believe though that, Feeding is never a sustainable solution, we do it not as passion but as a duty. We supported by cooking and serving Hot Meals to hundreds of Aboriginal people camped at the "TENT CITY Open Heimer Park for the six month. CARE GIVING: We give back to communities in any form by volunteer hours to Support the Seniors, single parents, those with disabilities other challenges, children and youth with Developmental disabilities, family and children facing challenges and abuses, we do accompanying, shopping, Doctor’s Appointments etc. OUR GOAL: Network, share and learn about the Programs/Services in Canada and internationally that have worked or are working to address homelessness. Address Homelessness and respond by developing practical tools for interventions, source resources to implement programs and put in place preventative measures with the focus on long lasting sustainable solutions.