BIPT is a vital working group of senior representatives from 15+ different agencies, including health, education, recreation and culture, the library, the City, volunteer groups, immigrant service agencies and others. We conduct research, organize community dialogues, presentations, forums and networking events, develop resources, and lead communications campaigns that raise awareness and foster community engagement.
Burnaby Family Life holds the contract for the city’s Local Immigration Partnership. Michel Pouliot, Executive Director of Burnaby Family Life, and Chris Friesen, Director of Settlement Services at ISSofBC, currently co-chair the BIPT. The partnership’s work is also supported by two part-time, contracted project coordinators, Jody Johnson and Trevor Van Eerden, and by Dorothy Moreno, a part-time executive assistant.
Click on the drop-down menu to read about our member agencies.
The Burnaby Board of Trade is Burnaby’s pre-eminent member-based business association. The BBOT brings businesses together to develop strong networks, to represent the interests of the business community to local government and to foster economic development.
We also provide a range of services and benefits to our members, such as specialized or exclusive events and workshops, and discounted rates on common business expenses. Recognized as the economic development arm of the City of Burnaby, the BBOT works closely with the municipality and is a key part of the City’s economic development strategy.
The BBOT promotes the triple bottom line of economic, social and environmental sustainability. The Burnaby Board of Trade recognizes that business and community are integral to each other. A healthy business community is dependent on a vibrant, healthy community where all members are supported and participating to their fullest potential. The BIPT’s work is one of the essential building blocks to this vision as it seeks to make Burnaby one of the most welcoming communities in Canada.
Tessa Vanderkop – Manager, Marketing, Programs and Sustainability
Phone: 604-412-0100 x1107
Founded in 1971, Burnaby Community Connections is a charitable society that provides a voice, resources and opportunities to people who need support. We believe change can only happen when people are empowered to improve their lives and communities. Currently, Burnaby Community Connections offers a range of programs and publications to support low-income families and isolated seniors. We provided services to individuals 104,426 times last year.
Burnaby is a community rich with diversity. These differences can bring us together to explore culture, religion, ethnicity, identity and worldviews – all the things that make us unique. We can build a community that welcomes people for who they are and want to be, provides opportunities for families, youth, seniors, newcomers and everyone to flourish and contribute, and empowers those who are most vulnerable.
The Burnaby Intercultural Planning Table helps to build the bridges that make this kind of community a reality. Through the BIPT’s work, it is easy to see how diversity improves all of our lives and makes Burnaby a community that people can be proud to call home.
Stephen D’Souza – Executive Director
Burnaby Family Life (BFL) is the founding organization of the Burnaby Intercultural Planning Table. BFL’s role in the broad continuum of service providers includes a range of services at 12 different Burnaby locations, primarily in the area of early intervention and prevention. Burnaby Family Life has 25 formal partnerships with other organizations in joint service delivery. It also has a strong commitment to develop community services that are accessible and welcoming to all.
For this reason, Burnaby Family Life provides effective referrals to partner organizations and shares its resources to meet gaps in services in the city’s rapidly changing community. The majority of BFL services focus on the well-being of children, families and the community to alleviate the need for more costly crisis intervention services by government authorities. Recognizing that, from time to time, all families experience crisis and are in need of support, BFL seeks to be responsive to the whole community in all its diversity. Many services, however, specifically target low-income families, lone parent families, immigrant and refugee families, isolated families lacking support, and families experiencing anger, depression and/or abuse.
Concerned about the barriers and gaps in services facing Burnaby’s growing population of immigrants and refugees, Burnaby Family Life called a focus group of service providers together in January, 1996 to discuss how the community could improve their services to better meet the needs of a changing, diverse population. That mandate has carried us into the present partnership as a founding organization of the BIPT as we continue to engage and integrate the immigrant population and enhance the work of existing service providers in Burnaby.
Michel Pouliot – Executive Director
Don Dyck – Co-Chair, Burnaby Interfaith Network
Burnaby Neighbourhood House (BNH) is a community-based social service agency that provides a wide range of supportive programs and services for individuals and families. BNH has established a South “House” and a North “House” to welcome people young and old and from diverse backgrounds.
It is the neighbourhood house philosophy that everyone should have equal access to community programs. Community building and engagement are common BNH themes. Neighbours support neighbours at the Burnaby Neighbourhood House.
Through volunteerism, people are able to give back to their community. Volunteers are an integral part of any Neighbourhood House, helping with organizational development and operations, program leadership, office and reception work, and maintenance. A Neighbourhood House can find a volunteer job that fits any individual’s skills, needs and interests.
BNH’s mission is to make neighbourhoods better places to live. Our goal is to enable people to enhance their lives and strengthen their communities. Our challenge is to work with communities to develop innovative programs and services that meet the changing needs of a diverse population.
We are committed to working collaboratively to ensure a welcoming and supportive community for all Burnaby residents.
Antonia Beck – Executive Director
Burnaby Public Library provides access to a rich array of the world’s stories, ideas and information. Our vision is a vibrant community where all people are informed, literate and entertained. Each year, borrowers check out more than 3 million items from our diverse collection of books, DVDs, magazines, and almost 2 million people visit our four branches. The Bob Prittie Metrotown Branch, opened in 1991 and serving the Metrotown Centre, is considered the central branch. The Cameron Branch, opened in 1980, serves the Lougheed Town Centre and is located in the Cameron Recreation Complex. The McGill Branch, redeveloped in 2001, serves the Brentwood Town Centre and houses the City of Burnaby Archives. Burnaby’s newest branch, the Tommy Douglas Library, opened in 2009 and serves the Edmonds Town Centre. The Home Library and Accessible Service Department offers a mobile service for residents who are homebound or have a visual impairment. In addition, the Library’s Outreach Van enables staff to bring the Library to community gathering places and neighbourhood events.
Beth Davies – Chief Librarian
The Burnaby RCMP Detachment provides policing services to the City of Burnaby and the communities and citizens within its borders. Like the BIPT, the RCMP seeks to promote and support diversity in the City of Burnaby.
Kathy Hartwig – Inspector, Community Programs Ops Officer
Phone: (604) 294-7922
Burnaby School District #41 encompasses 41 elementary schools and 8 secondary schools. It enrolls 24,000 students (K-12) and reflects the increasingly global nature of the Burnaby community. More than 100 languages (other than English) are spoken in the homes of Burnaby students.
Burnaby School District’s federally funded “Settlement Workers In Schools” (SWIS) Program has successfully addressed the needs of newly arrived immigrant and refugee students and their families settling in Burnaby schools and communities. Individually tailored services and supports are provided in 15 languages to cover a vast variety of settlement and educational needs of Burnaby newcomers.
Natalya Khan – Coordinator Cultural Transition Services
Phone: 604-296-6900 x 661101
The City of Burnaby, the local government, is located in the centre of Metro Vancouver. The City of Burnaby celebrates the role that diversity and culture play to support a cohesive, creative and engaged community, and recognizes cultural diversity as a source of community enrichment and strength. Burnaby has long focused on supporting its increasingly diverse community to create a welcoming environment where all feel a sense of belonging.
Rebekah Mahaffey – Social Planner
Phone: (604) 570-3673
Cindy Chang – Manager, Recreation Services (East)
The Burnaby Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Department ensures that Burnaby residents have access to beautiful outdoor spaces, recreation programs as well as cultural and fine art facilities. We are pleased to provide a wide array of opportunities for different ages, interests and skill levels. Take advantage of the many opportunities we offer at our wonderful, well-equipped recreation and arts facilities along with the many beautiful parks located throughout the city. As our city evolves and needs change, everyone involved with the department remains dedicated to ensuring that our parks, facilities, programs and services continue to be a benchmark for the rest of the country. Together, our goal is to create a community that provides you with opportunities for an active and healthy lifestyle.
Cindy Chang – Manager, Recreation Services (East)
The Training Group at Douglas College has offered labour market solutions for government, business, industry and individuals since 1992 from our two campuses and four training centres. We have provided employment services to more than 1600 internationally trained professionals in Burnaby since 2006 through the Skills Connect for Immigrants Program. This program has maintained an 80% success rate in assisting program participants to upgrade their qualifications and find professional work in their fields.
Our clients tell us how important it is to feel a part of their communities and contribute to society. As service providers, we understand the significance of forming personal and professional connections to facilitate the economic integration of our clients. We are therefore committed to promoting the benefits of community involvement to our clients by raising awareness of local initiatives and encouraging their participation.
Pam Tetarenko – Associate Director
Fraser Health Authority delivers a wide range of health care services to more than 1.8 million people living in communities stretching from Burnaby to White Rock to Hope. More than 25,000 staff, 2,600 physicians and 8,000 volunteers provide services that range from acute care to community-based residential, home, mental and public health.
Specifically, our Healthy Living/Healthier Communities team works both internally and with municipalities and community groups to support vulnerable citizens and neighbourhoods. The team also works to improve community health through healthy living initiatives, with the goal of reducing rates of chronic disease. Evidence shows that “inclusive communities are healthier communities”. The participation of the health sector is important in the BIPT initiative as it brings a “health lens” to many discussions and activities.
Jovana Turkovich – Community Health Specialists – Burnaby
The Burnaby WorkBC Employment Services Centre (ESC) serves as a one-stop employment services shop. The Centre provides services to individuals who are looking for work, interested in changing jobs, enrolled in an apprenticeship program, receiving Provincial Income Assistance, receiving Federal Employment Insurance, or just interested in what’s happening in the local labour market.
Christian Saint Cyr – Coordinator, Community Outreach
Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISSofBC) was incorporated in 1972 as the first immigrant-serving agency in the province. Since that time, ISSofBC has grown to be one of the largest, multicultural, immigrant-serving agencies in western Canada. The Society provides a variety of services to Lower Mainland immigrant and refugee communities, and works with over 23,000 clients per year. ISSofBC has a volunteer Board of Directors, a paid staff of over 400 and more than 800 active volunteers.
Our staff and volunteers work together to achieve ISSofBC’s mission of ‘helping immigrants build a future in Canada’ through the provision of language, settlement and employment services, as well as targeted capacity building projects.
With growing diversity and an increase in the number of immigrants and refugees settling in Burnaby, BIPT provides an invaluable opportunity for ISSofBC to come together with other members of civil society to build a more welcoming and inclusive community. It is by working together, collaborating on joint projects, research initiatives and community planning exercises, etc. that our work, as an agency, has a greater impact.
Chris Friesen – Director, Settlement Services
The Journey Home Community Association focuses on serving newly arrived refugee families. JHC provides housing, resettlement assistance and relational support. The service approach at Journey Home Community is an integrated and holistic one, so we normally would not provide just one aspect of assistance (e.g. only providing housing to a family). JHC is a faith-based organization and our activities are grounded in Christian values and principles.
One of the core values of the BIPT is to welcome newcomers. This is closely aligned with the values of the Journey Home Community, since we invite people into the community and believe that relationships must be mutual. The JHC’s role in the BIPT is to make sure the voice of the refugee is heard.
James Grunau – Executive Director
Baljinder Gill – Community Training and Outreach Coordinator
Maio, Gabriella – Community Development Worker
MOSAIC is an accredited, multilingual, non-profit organization dedicated to addressing issues that affect immigrants and refugees during their settlement and integration into Canadian society.
MOSAIC’s mandate is to support and empower immigrant and refugee communities and to help them address critical issues in their neighbourhoods and workplaces. Our work is guided by our vision of equality, social justice, equal access and democracy. Our tools are advocacy, public education, community development, coalition building, and bridging with the broader community.
MOSAIC has responded to Burnaby’s growing immigrant population by increasing its services, locations and staff in the city. In 2005, MOSAIC launched its co-location settlement services, with the Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion and the CCM of Canada, in the Crystal Mall.
We opened our first Burnaby office in 2008 and have since expanded to nine client-accessible sites with a total of 65 staff, who work with an intake of 1200-1500 Burnaby clients per month. MOSAIC delivers more than 30 programs and services to Burnaby residents, assisting newcomers in the areas of settlement, employment and language training. Clients consist of immigrant and refugee families, youth, adults and seniors.
Since its inception in 1976, MOSAIC has assisted new immigrants and refugees through its numerous multilingual services. MOSAIC’s programs and services are constantly evolving and developing in response to the needs of the community. We are a trusted partner and believe the BIPT can collectively address the needs of immigrants and refugees in Burnaby.
Sherman Chan – Director of Family and Settlement Services
PIRS provides services to immigrants and refugees in ways that respect ethnic backgrounds and settlement and integration needs. PIRS strives to create a society that values the diverse contributions of immigrants and refugees, promotes the enrichment of their lives, and empowers them to participate in Canadian life through neighbourhood-based programs.
Mariam Bouchoutrouch – Executive Director
In the place where innovative education, cutting-edge research and community outreach intersect, you’ll find Simon Fraser University. Our vision is to be Canada’s leading engaged university. Established in 1965, SFU is Canada’s leading comprehensive university with vibrant campuses in British Columbia’s largest municipalities — Vancouver, Burnaby and Surrey — and deep roots in partner communities throughout the province and around the world.
Shaheen Nanji – Executive Director (acting)
S.U.C.C.E.S.S. was founded in 1973 and incorporated in 1974 as a non-profit charitable organization for the purpose of promoting the well-being of Canadians and immigrants. S.U.C.C.E.S.S. began as a new immigrant settlement service organization, but has developed into a multi-service, multicultural agency. There are 11 branches in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia.
Programs are delivered in culturally sensitive ways to meet client needs. Through innovative programming, we assist new immigrants with settlement, provide counselling and support to families and individuals with personal issues, promote personal development of children and youth, facilitate social participation of parents and seniors in the community, help the unemployed in job and career development, facilitate entrepreneurs in business development, deliver education and employment related training, and promote social change through community development and advocacy.
Approximately 70% of the S.U.C.C.E.S.S. annual operating fund comes from the three levels of government. The remaining funding is raised through donations, membership dues, cost recovery programs, corporate sponsorships and contributions from the S.U.C.C.E.S.S Foundation. Annually, the S.U.C.C.E.S.S. Foundation holds two major fundraising events: the Walk with the Dragon and a Gala. In 1979, S.U.C.C.E.S.S. became a member of the United Way of the Lower Mainland. In 1994, S.U.C.C.E.S.S. received the Citation for Citizenship Award for its contribution to new immigrants’ settlement and integration. S.U.C.C.E.S.S. was accredited by the Council on Accreditation in May 2008 for the achievement of best practice standards.
The BIPT provides an excellent communication channel for Burnaby service providers at all levels. The network allows for efficient communications between agencies and gives organizations the opportunity to voice community needs. It helps service providers to work together. And the information updates from all three levels of government are excellent for settlement practitioners.
Aaron Kilner – Regional Manager
As a values-based financial co-operative, Vancity is committed to transforming how banking is done so we can help our members and their local communities thrive financially, socially and environmentally. Our “Good Money” brand platform is about supporting our vision of redefining wealth and communicating it in a tangible and understandable way. We promise members that, at Vancity, we make you good money by putting money to good.
Vancity’s involvement with BIPT revolves around both organizations’ commitment to inclusivity and diversity. Over the years, Vancity and BIPT have partnered to help new immigrants and refugees settle and integrate into Canadian society.
Kathryn Fitzgerald – Branch Manager
The V.L.M. Multicultural Family Support Services Society is a non-profit agency, providing culturally and linguistically sensitive services to immigrant, visible minority, refugee and no-status women and their families who are experiencing abuse. Services include advocacy, counselling and support. The Children Who Witness Abuse Program provides bi-cultural parenting, and individual and group counselling for children 0-19.
Community based victim assistance workers support women accessing the legal and judicial systems. Multicultural outreach workers provide direct services to women and the volunteers’ program offers training and educational workshops and programs to women seeking access to the workforce.
Anna Foschi – Volunteers’ Coordinator
Phone: 604-436-1025 x 129