The Family Violence Initiative provides family violence awareness activities for ethnic and visible minority communities through the broadcast media. From 1998 to 2001 COSTI Immigrant Services worked with 14 diverse ethno cultural communities and their broadcast media to increase awareness and access to information regarding issues of woman, child, and elder abuse. This year a new component to the program was added, with the expansion to the Arabic, Farsi/Iranian, Hindi, Hispanic, Russian, Somali, Tamil and Vietnamese communities.
As the Statistics Canada 2001 census reports, southern Ontario has four out of the top five urban centres for immigrant settlement in all of Canada. COSTI will target ethno-specific agencies and involve them in delivering the prevention messages to their own communities while providing capacity building opportunities for the agencies.
Within the settlement community, employment has long been considered an essential element in the overall settlement and integration process of the newcomer to Canada.
Newcomers arrive in Canada with new ideas, skills, resources, and a strong desire to contribute to the cultural and economic framework of this society, However, for newcomers to fulfill their potential, they must first be given the opportunity to develop the tools needed to secure employment in their new country.
The objective of the JSW program is to facilitate the employment of new immigrants to Ontario by familiarizing them with effective job-search practices and techniques in Canada. This goal is achieved through the delivery of culturally sensitive pre-employment workshops in selected regions across Ontario, such as Kitchener-Waterloo, Windsor, London, Hamilton, Ottawa, St. Catherine's, and Durham, as well as Toronto.
The NeCTAR Project is aimed at facilitating newcomers' access to Ontario's Apprenticeship Program. Through this public awareness and training project, user-friendly information materials have been developed and disseminated to internationally trained tradespeople. Information and training has been provided to front line staff of various community organizations in order to provide broad and easy access to the various apprenticeship and employment opportunities available to newcomers residing in Ontario.
COSTI's Problem Gambling Service addresses the need for culturally appropriate services for a range of ethno-cultural groups with regard to gambling and problem gambling. The program, although centered on the Greater Toronto Area, provides services across Ontario. COSTI has led the research on problem-gambling in 14 different ethnic communities. Over a period of three years the program will develop approaches, materials and resources that will be made available to these and other communities and organizations across the province.