The Zonal Outreach Newcomer Engagement (ZONE) Program, formerly called the Neighbourhood Immigrant Settlement Program (NISP), welcomes a change in name and a new program lead. The new name reflects the standardization of newcomer settlement services across Canada. The ZONE coordinator continues to support the ZONE Settlement Workers from the seven designated ZONE agencies.
The latter part of the fiscal year has been busy with the formation of the Downtown Newcomer Hub, which aims to create a network of collaborative agencies in the downtown area. Led by the ZONE Coordinator, the newly formed group will consist of representatives from various non-profit agencies, educational institutions, WRHA, Service Canada, and the City of Winnipeg.
The ZONE Settlement Workers meet virtually every month with the Mini ZONEs, Specialized Services, and IRCC-funded Newcomer Service providers in attendance. During the meeting, the ZONEs share updates and challenges relevant to providing settlement services. Guest speakers came to present community resources which attendees found to be helpful.
In addition to the virtual meeting, the ZONE settlement group had its first in-person team building on March 30, 2022. Hosted at the Immigrant Centre, the event aimed to provide support as the settlement workers transition from virtual programming to in-person.
As the Manitoba government eases Covid 19 regulations, the ZONE settlement agencies have gradually reopened their doors to accommodate more community programs. In strict observance of the safety regulations recommended by the government, the agencies have successfully hosted newcomer community gatherings in which the ZONE coordinator enjoyed participating.
The quarterly ZONE Advisory Committee saw the launch of the Winnipeg Settlement Resource Guide for the Newcomers. The 14-page booklet will have the contact information and core services offered by the ZONE, Mini ZONE, and Newcomer Serving agencies. The IRCC project officers and coordinators from ZONE, Mini-ZONE, and relevant settlement service providers attended the meeting.
The Referral and Permission to Share Forms are now available as an addition to the ZONE resources. These forms are available to refer clients between the ZONEs or if other newcomer agencies would like to refer to the ZONEs. The ZONE coordinator organized and facilitated the Referral form training to the ZONE Settlement Workers and other newcomer serving agencies.
Before the end of the 2021 fiscal year, settlement workers from different agencies expressed their interest in co-facilitating the Share Our World (SOW) program. Share Our World is an IRCC-funded program promoting multiculturalism, cross-cultural adaptation, and celebration of diversity. The program is expected to run at the beginning of the next fiscal year