Dignitary Visits And Lectures
COSTI believes in working with, and enhancing ties with other countries, and facilitating the exchange of ideas, values, knowledge and experience. Over the years, COSTI has hosted international dignitaries from France, Italy, Norway, Sweden, South America, and other European and South American countries, interested in understanding settlement and employment services to newcomers.
Recent International Delegations and Lectures
COSTI's Caledonia Centre hosted a delegation of service providers from Holland who were in Canada studying how immigrants are integrated. They were studying how various established services respond to specific immigrant needs.
Organized by the Department of Foreign Affairs, young journalists from Europe toured the Caledonia Centre to learn of Canada's success in integrating immigrants.
COSTI's Executive Director delivered a lecture to a joint class of students at George Brown College and a second lecture to a joint class at Seneca College. The lectures were on the impact of immigration on Canada's demographics, the evolving values of Canadians, and the impact of multiculturalism and integration policies.
Along with community colleagues, COSTI's Executive Director presented a workshop at the 2004 Metropolis Conference. "Integrating Diversity: The Canadian Experiment/Experience" shared data on the increasing ethnic diversity of Canada's population and examined theoretical concepts as well as policies and programs at the federal, provincial, and municipal levels, designed to integrate immigrants and refugees into the Canadian Mosaic.
COSTI hosted a delegation of twenty Fellows from the Weatherhead Centre for International Affairs at Harvard University. The Fellows were on an intensive study tour of Canada organized by Foreign Affairs. These Fellows are leaders from various countries who will spend a year studying and teaching at Harvard. They were in Canada studying its diversity and the integration of immigrants.
COSTI's Executive Director met with a delegation of senior civil servants from Norway who were interested in COSTI's work with immigrant youth.
COSTI's work with international delegations resulted in many international referrals from Citizenship and Immigration Canada and the Department of Foreign Affairs. Some of the dignitaries hosted by COSTI in 2004 include the Minister of Education from Argentina and senior staff; the Consul General and Vice-Consul of the Netherlands, senior officials from Denmark; and journalists from all over the world, including Spain, Italy, South America, and South East Asia. All were interested in various aspects of immigrant settlement, diversity, multiculturalism, and service delivery models.