Community Connections

Supports newcomers through educational classes, relationship building, & social activities

Community Connections

The Multicultural Department’s Community Connections Program offers several components to support newcomers to Canada as they progress along their settlement processes within their new community. We offer educational classes, relationship building, social activities, and community events to help newcomers build connections in their community.

Please see below for a list of current programs.

    Who We Help

    • Adult newcomers to Canada, focusing on Permanent Residents. 
    • We can also serve work permit holders, naturalized citizens, and refugee claimants in some of our classes and events. Please contact us to find out if you are eligible.

    To Access Community Connections

    • Classes and events are by registration. Please register by calling or emailing in advance.
    • You can also keep up to date with our events on our  Facebook page.
    • There is no charge for any programs.

    Weekly Sessions & Events

    Conversation Circles

    Newcomers can connect with each other, practice speaking English, and learn about Canadian culture and their new community from a volunteer.

    Citizenship Preparation

    These sessions give support as newcomers study for the knowledge test and are offered twice per year. This is a a great way to prepare for success with the Canadian Citizenship requirements.

    Social Activities

    Social activities including the weekly knitting group, drop-in soccer, volunteer opportunities, and special events allow newcomers to connect and engage in their new community.

    Book Club

    A weekly book club is offered at times throughout the year to support higher level English learners in reading and public speaking.

    Educational Sessions

    Educational sessions support newcomers as they settle in Abbotsford. Topics include cooking and nutrition; parenting; health and wellness; and volunteerism.

    Friendship-based Matching Program

    Helps link newcomers to diverse social networks in our community through a one-to-one pairing with a volunteer. While building a new friendship, Connections volunteers will help with newcomers’ priorities such as learning about Canada and the Abbotsford community, developing new social networks, obtaining services, and practicing English.

    From Volunteer Match to Lifelong Friends

    “I just wanted to say thank you to you for the citizenship class provided last year…. I can’t tell you the amount of confidence I feel thanks to your class and the time you spent helping us navigate through all that information (new to all of us) in such a short period of time.”

    Newcomer

    Did You Know?

    Community Connections began as the Host Program in 1995 and Archway has been providing services for newcomers for 50+ years.

    “I think that this program, with a Canadian volunteer friend, is the best way to learn English.”

    Newcomer

    Interested in volunteering with Community Connections? Read Claudia’s and Jen’s story to learn more about the program.

    They were matched through the Community Connections program, and their volunteer-based relationship quickly turned into a genuine friendship. Read More

    Volunteers Wanted

    Volunteers are needed to help connect newcomers to Abbotsford through the one-on-one program and the conversation circles. 

    Hours of Operation

    Programs run weekly at different times, please see the list of current programs.

    Address

    33780 Laurel Street
    Abbotsford V2S 1X4

    In Partnership With:

    Stories & News from the Multicultural & Immigrant Integration Services

    30 Years of Serving the Community

    “I started as a lot of people do here – for 10 hours per week,” shares Manpreet Grewal, the director of the Multicultural and Immigrant Integration Department at Abbotsford Community Services (ACS). At that time, 30 years ago, there was no Multicultural Department....

    Newcomers Fair Showcased Services Available in Abbotsford

    This event was for everyone from immigrants, to people who have moved to Abbotsford from another city, to those seeking employment services or information on childcare subsidies. The Immigrant Settlement program and AbbotsfordWORKS co-hosted the event and provided job...

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