AAISA’s Provincial Engagement Initiative (PEI) is comprised of participants across three regional committees in Calgary, Edmonton, and the Small Centres. Through the PEI committees, AAISA seeks to identify systems-level challenges and facilitate collaborative solutions in service of a provincially shared vision of settlement and integration for newcomers in Alberta.
In 2019/2020 PEI term, AAISA convened three meetings with each committee, including one in-person meeting in November 2019, and two virtual meetings in February and June 2020. In all three committees, AAISA identified two key provincial challenges based on previous research and engagement across the province’s settlement and integration sector. While these challenges are provincial in nature, each committee brought forth regional context which serves to nuance and inform a broader provincial position. The key themes of the discussions across the three committees were:
Informed by discussions in PEI 2019/2020 term, AAISA has launched a project to help build resources for agencies that serve refugee claimants.
The project aimed at better understanding and communicating existing refugee claimants supports in terms of settlement supports and legal resources, leverage the experience of PEI committee members into the creation of best practices for serving refugee claimants, and facilitate mutual knowledge exchange with the legal aid community. The intent of which is to provide additional resources to agencies in providing services to refugee claimants, improve the awareness of the challenges refugee claimants face, and assist refugee claimants access to support, particularly legal supports.
AAISA has created resources for agencies that will be hosted on AAISA’s Toolkit.
Through upcoming PEI meetings in 2020/2021 term, AAISA will seek to facilitate collaborative solutions to identified provincial challenges while still recognizing regional realities and context. Moreover, as the work of these regional committees progresses, AAISA looks forward to continuing to foster productive relationships across our PEI agencies and with IRCC in service of a provincially shared vision of settlement and integration for newcomers in Alberta.