2.C Settlement and Integration
C.8 How is language treated?
(viii) How accessible are language services in terms of distance from the refugees’ residence, child care, etc?
How Canada Does It
Language classes are offered across Canada and in multiple locations within the cities where refugees typically resettle. Classes are available full-time or part-time during the day, evening or on weekends, and online. In some locations, childcare is available as well as subsidies for transportation to and from classes. Some programs service providers also offer support services such as provide referrals to crisis counselling, and interpretation services, and classes for people with special needs.
When searching for permanent housing for sponsored refugees, sponsors should consider proximity or accessibility via transit to settlement services, including language training.
Federally funded settlement language programming is designed to be flexible and widely accessible to address the unique challenges and diversity of all adult newcomer learners. Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) and Cours de langue pour les immigrants au Canada (CLIC) offer language classes nationwide to sponsored refugees with various levels of English or French. Online or distance learning options, LINC Home Study and Clic en ligne, are available for learners who cannot access in-person language services but require specific language levels or benchmarks.
To increase access to language instruction classes, the Government of Canada offers child-minding spaces in classes and transportation subsidies in certain locations. Classes to accommodate people with special needs (e.g. blind or partially sighted; deaf or hard of hearing; women; seniors; youth) may also be available.
For sponsored refugees living in smaller communities where formal language training is less accessible, combining tutoring, online learning, and conversation circles has been an effective strategy. Settlement agencies, community organizations, school boards, public libraries, and post-secondary institutions may also deliver informal language instruction.