Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Crosscare cautions emigrants as record numbers go to Canada

http://b.vimeocdn.com/ps/337/814/3378146_300.jpgCrosscare’s Migrant Project has cautioned young people to be prepared for some initial difficulties on arrival in Canada. 

The advice comes as more than 6000 holiday visas were made available on Tuesday and by Thursday all but 1000 had been allocated. 

Getting the visa is only the first step, and would be emigrants need to think about funding, insurance, accommodation and employment according to Joe O’Brien, Policy Officer, Crosscare Migrant Project, who said:

“People tend not to prepare adequately. A lot of what we do is tempering people’s expectations because when they hear that unemployment is quiet low in Canada they think it will be quiet easy to get a job, whereas it still takes the effort. We always recommend that they have savings in the bank.”

Joe O’Brien told catholicIreland.net that there are few Irish found destitute yet in Canada, unlike in the UK. “We have seen situations where people run out of money, they haven’t a job, nor have they a return ticket so they have to contact the consulate for help. People just underestimate how much time it takes to get a job. That happens quiet often," he added.

"People might rush into very expensive accommodation which eats into their savings. There would be occasions where people have had inadequate health insurance and ended up being hit with very high medical bills. They really need to read the small print on their health insurance.”

Canada is an increasingly popular destination for young Irish people and there are reasonable casual job prospects. People need to be willing to take the casual jobs initially and then look around for something that suits their qualifications. There is no substitute for good preparation Joe O'Brien said and explained: “Once you arrive you are out of your comfort zone and familiar support network and the resources start diminishing rapidly. It’s vital to do plenty of web research and also talk to as many people as possible who have been there recently.”

The Director of the Toronto based Irish Canadian Immigration Centre, Cathy Murphy also highlighted the supports saying their service meets the needs of newly-arrived Irish immigrants to Canada offering outreach and information regarding work permits, residency, social services, and employment. 

The Canadian government is welcoming a record number of Irish people this year. A total of 6,350 working holiday visas will be available to Irish people in 2013 -- 1,000 more than last year via the International Experience Canada initiative. 10,700 will be available in 2014. 

Canada is now the second most popular destination for working holidays well ahead of the USA which has a different allocation system and granted just over 1000 such visas last year. 

Australia remains the most popular destination for Irish emigrants, topping the allocation again last year with 18,940 issued up to the end of September 2012. Working Holidays Visas are 1-2 year visas for people who wish to travel and work casually in a country – Ireland has a number of reciprocal arrangements with such countries.

An estimated 46,500 Irish nationals emigrated from Ireland in the twelve months up to April 2012, according to the annual Population and Migration Estimates recently published by the Central Statistics Office. 

According to the ‘Fresh Perspectives’ report launched by the London Irish Centre in late October, the majority of recent Irish migrants to London are between age 18 to 35. 

Housing and employment were identified as two of the main challenges facing new arrivals, with 11.2 per cent reporting either anxiety or depression as a result of this. 

Brent, Ealing, and Islington are popular destinations for recent migrants, and more recently Clapham.




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