“With all the information, support and motivation from ICA, I felt very confident when I applied for the job that I wanted. I got the job on my first interview.” — Ana, Early Childhood Educator
One of the biggest challenges newcomers face when they come to Canada is not being able to work in their chosen professions because they don’t have the equivalent Canadian licenses or qualifications. This often means people with engineering, medical and education backgrounds are unable contribute their knowledge here when they arrive and want to work in the fields in which they have the most experience.
This is just what Ana faced when she came to Victoria. Here is her story:
Ana immigrated to Canada in 2018 from Indonesia. When she first arrived, she felt confused and wasn’t sure how she would succeed in her new home. Despite having been a trained teacher for 20 years in many different schools and many different places in Indonesia and elsewhere, she felt very frustrated when she tried to find a job in her profession, education.
While waiting for her Permanent Resident status to be approved, she attended a local job fair in downtown Victoria. It was a discouraging experience and she questioned her ability to find employment as a teacher. Just as she was about the leave the job fair, she noticed ICA’s information booth.
This turned out to be most fortuitous. It was there that she met Mirko Kovacev, an Employment Services Case Manager and Facilitator with ICA. Ana learned about the many services available to her at ICA, including ICA’s Career Paths for Skilled Immigrants program. Mirko encouraged Ana to come to ICA, where she subsequently registered in the CPSI program.
From her first meeting with Mirko, Ana says “I was very impressed with the organization and I was given important information about how to find and pursue my career in Victoria with the help from ICA.”
Though she had temporarily accepted a job as a cashier, she wanted to return to her professional career as a teacher. Eventually, Ana chose to pursue a career as an Early Childhood Educator, as this would allow her to pursue her passion of working with children, without the lengthy process of requalifying to become a teacher in the public school system.
After completing her courses at Sprott Shaw College and Pacific Rim Early Childhood Institute, Ana was ready to re-enter the workforce. Now, Ana is a full-time Early Childhood Educator and is making a difference in the community.
Ana had this to say about her overall experience at ICA, “It is a very good place to find information about jobs and the community. It is a very important place especially for newcomers to Victoria. They can get much needed support and help to start their new lives and contribute to the community through their career that they want to pursue.”
To others who are new arrivals to Greater Victoria, Ana has this advice: “Pursue something you like to do when choosing which is your best job option and find an organization like ICA to help you achieve your goals. You will be successful when you are using your experience and life skills.”