Past BIPT Projects

The BIPT has led many initiatives to raise awareness of the issues faced by immigrants and refugees since its inception in 2007. It has also helped Burnaby residents welcome and include newcomers. The following list of resources, tools and reports are some of the results of this work.

Click on the drop-down menu for additional information on our work.

>> LGBTQ2S+ BIPT Community Forum – March 2018

The Burnaby Intercultural Planning Table (BRIPT)/Burnaby Local Immigration Partnership hosted a Community Forum on LGBTQ2S+ newcomers’ issues affecting this community. The objective of the forum was to have service providers (1) leave with the knowledge and awareness of LGBTQ+ newcomer experiences and (2) how to improve their services for LGBTQ+ newcomers by establishing a network of service providers, to enable individuals working in the fields of newcomer and settlement populations to feel as though they are not working on this alone or in a silo. A connected community is a much more resilient one, so our hope is to bring together professionals that can network, liaise and learn from one another, as much as from the subject matter experts (those with lived experiences as an LGBTQ+ newcomer).

The panels responded to the following questions:

  1. What does it mean to create safer spaces for LGBTQ+ people impacted by colonization, displacement, and intersecting oppressions?
  2. What does it mean to create safer spaces for LGBTQ+ people across the lifespan?
  3. How can we foster and built connections and a sense of community across demographics – age, gender, race, status, ability, language, sexuality?

The video is a summary of the voices heard and shared with the Burnaby community. View the video here

Report: 2018 BIPT Community Forum

>> 2017 BIPT Community Forum – October 2017

The theme for this year’s forum was inspired by the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Final Report and Calls to Action, which lay out reconciliation responsibilities for all Canadian citizens and institutions, including newcomers. Many newcomers to Canada and Burnaby arrive with an incomplete awareness of the history and current realities of Indigenous Peoples in Canada, including the many similarities of experience. This lack of awareness is also true of many long-term residents. As such, this forum aimed to create an opportunity to learn from our shared history and take concrete steps to build an
exceptionally inclusive and welcoming city.

Click here for more information.

>> 2016 BIPT Community Forum – October 2016

On October 13, 2016,  BIPT hosted a community forum to actively engage and involve the stakeholder community in the implementation of the Burnaby Settlement and Integration Strategic Plan. This forum was attended by 91 representatives from 39 community organizations. Attendees reviewed the 4 strategic priorities and participated in small group discussions resulting in recommendations which will be considered  by BIPT members and working groups in the implementation of the annual action plan. This information is also available to the stakeholder community to inform and enhance existing programs and services.

Summary Report – 2016 BIPT Community Forum

To view photos from the Community Forum click here.

>> Consultations with Community Leaders – November 2015

Mayor Corrigan and Council are kept up to date on the work of the BIPT through regular reports provided by City staff who are members of the Table – Chief Librarian, Edel Toner Rogala and Social Planner, Rebekah Mahaffey. The BIPT Co-Chairs and Project Coordinator also meet with the Mayor annually to provide an update and discuss current newcomer integration issues and approaches.

As a part of the strategic planning process, in November 2015, the BIPT hosted a consultation with Burnaby leaders including Mayor and Council and senior level representatives from health, transit, education, policing, libraries, business, faith, etc. Leaders were presented findings from all the BIPT research and community consultations conducted and were asked to provide their input on priorities and actions for consideration in development of the strategic plan.

Immigrant and Refugee Settlement and Integration Planning, Burnaby Leaders’ Consultation Summary Report

>>Burnaby Immigration Quick Look – February 2015

This two page snapshot of cultural diversity in Burnaby provides a quick look at the most important facts of  immigration to Burnaby including information and data on immigrant country of origin, age, education and employment.

Burnaby Equals Diversity – A Snapshot of Immigration to Burnaby

>> Immigrant and Refugee Focus Groups – January 2015

Seven focus groups with Burnaby immigrants were conducted between December 2014 and January 2015. Approximately 84 immigrants, 59 women and 25 men, participated in the focus groups. Participants originated from 25 countries, the majority of them are working age adults and have lived in Canada somewhere between 2 months and 20+ years; the majority have been here less than 10 years.

The report below summarizes the comments and ideas shared at the focus groups. This input as well as input collected at the Community Service Provider Event were used to develop the Fact Sheet – How Inclusive is Burnaby? The fact sheet provides a snapshot of the perspectives of both groups on the welcoming and inclusive nature of Burnaby.

BIPT Focus Group Summary January 2015

Fact Sheet – How Inclusive is Burnaby?

>>Community Service Provider Consultation – October 2014

In October of 2014, over 90 Burnaby service providers from 38 agencies gathered to provide input to current immigrant and refugee integration barriers and issues and what needs to be done to make Burnaby a better place for newcomers.

Prior to the event an online survey examining the dimensions of a welcoming and inclusive community was completed by registrants. The information collected in the survey was used to guide discussions at the consultation.

This report provides a summary the pre-event survey as well as a summary of the input obtained at the consultation. This information will be used by the BIPT to inform the development of it Settlement Strategic Plan for Burnaby.

Summary of Community Service Provider Consultation

>> 100+ Ways to Welcome: Ideas for Residents

The BIPT Project Team connected with newcomers and longer-term residents through focus groups and print and online surveys. “Ways to Welcome” were collected from 200+ individuals, which resulted in our list of 102 tips – actions that almost anyone can take to welcome newcomers.

For more information, click here.

>> The Burnaby Storytelling Project

The Burnaby Storytelling Project was one component of a public-awareness campaign, undertaken by the BIPT, to inform and educate Burnaby citizens about the value that immigrants and refugees bring to our community. The Storytelling Project involved training a team of 22 storytellers to share their newcomer experiences at community events in Burnaby. This group of storytellers, by sharing their personal experiences in compelling and inspiring ways, humanize the issues faced by immigrants and refugees in the city.   

>> Looking In – Reaching Out

Looking In – Reaching Out was a collaborative project aimed at opening up dialogue and establishing Burnaby as a welcoming and inclusive community for new immigrants. A series of three broad-based, community forums brought together long-time residents, newcomers, businesses, First Nations, government representatives, service providers and others to share their expertise and experiences.

One goal of the talks was to produce a forward-thinking report, as well as visual and narrative profiles of individuals contributing to our cultural diversity. These publications were distributed to BIPT members and community stakeholders.

To read the Looking In Reaching Out: Community Talks Report, click here.

>> Burnaby Resident Survey

Welcoming and inclusive societies are created when community members have opportunities to learn and grow together. A great deal of research and work has been done to obtain an understanding of the barriers and challenges faced by newcomers in the integration process. But less research has been conducted to understand how a community perceives the negative and positive impacts of multiculturalism, diversity and social cohesion, and on the individual’s role in the development of welcoming communities. With that in mind, the Burnaby Intercultural Planning Table surveyed the residents of Burnaby to learn about perceptions and opinions on immigration and diversity. This work has provided valuable information that assists the BIPT membership and other community service providers in developing new programs and services.

To read the final report, click here.

>> BIPT Settlement Workers’ Networking Event

This annual event brings Burnaby Settlement workers together to learn about changes in settlement and employment services that have occurred over the past year. The event also gives settlement workers the opportunity to learn about new programs and services, meet and network with other colleagues and discuss best and promising practices.

To view photos from the 2013 BIPT Settlement Workers’ Networking event, click here.

To view photos from the November 2012 BIPT Settlement Workers’ Networking event, click here.

To view photos from the May 2012 BIPT Settlement Workers’ Networking event, click here.

>> Anti-Racism Mural

The BIPT held community workshops to bring together people of different ages and ethnic backgrounds. The ideas that came out of the workshops were then used to create an anti-racism mural, which now adorns a wall at the Marlborough Community School in Burnaby. The mural was funded by EmbraceBC.

To view photos of the mural unveiling, celebration and BBQ, click here.

>> Employment Road Maps: Exploring Canadian Career Pathways – February 2018

Understanding that work cultures, employment structures and hiring practices differ not only across employment sectors, but across cities and countries as well. It is challenging for immigrant and refugee job seekers arriving in Canada to navigate a new employment landscape, often resulting in underemployment or unemployment. The conference goal was to bring awareness to the nonlinear nature of work search and provide information on the employment standards. The one day conference explored workplace culture in a broader sense, allowing immigrant job seekers to be empowered and to create road maps that can lead to commensurate employment and/or help them discover new career paths.

The conference opened with a keynote presentation explaining the non-linear nature of career planning to help the immigrant and refugee participants understand that it is not always possible to find employment in their area of expertise upon their arrival. There were two breakout sessions on specific fields: clean technology, construction engineering, information technology, hospitality, manufacturing and health care. Each breakout session had an employer, a settlement service organization and a newcomer presenting his/her success story with a Q & A session for participants to ask questions to the panelists. Participants were offered the opportunity to attend the two breakout sessions. The first session was in their trained field and the second session in another field they wanted to explore as a new career path. The event closed with a presentation on Intercultural Competency / Workplace Cultural Competency and soft skills to demystify the “career experience”. The networking lunch and Market Place brought participants, presenters and agencies to interact and receive advice.

Employment Road Maps: Exploring Canadian Career Pathways

>> Smart Networking – March 2017

BIPT studies highlight the need for providing opportunities for newcomers to make more meaningful connections with employers and learn about the hiring process in the Canadian job market. While employers have recommended creating activities that connect employers to and increase awareness of the skilled immigrant talent pool. Taking these research findings and recommendations into consideration BIPT has developed a strategic action plan to help improve labour market attachment of newcomers. The implementation of this plan is guided by a working group of six BIPT member organisations that was established in June 2015. As part of this action plan the BIPT Employment Working Group has proposed an advanced/comprehensive networking initiative. The rationale is building a strong network is important not only do one’s job effectively but also gain employment opportunities that otherwise newcomers may never have access to. This initiative will provide practical knowledge and skills for building strong networks and the opportunity for newcomers to connect with potential employers while introducing employers to the available skilled immigrant talent pool. The report below describes the “Smart Networking” initiative a project in partnership with the Burnaby Board of Trade, Douglas College, MOSAIC and the Simon Fraser University.

Smart Networking: Practical Networking Skills for Job Ready Newcomers from the IT and Engineering Sectors

>> Issue Based Research – October 2015

BIPT research and consultations identified workplace attachment and immigrant volunteerism as issues requiring further exploration and research. A review of all immigrant focused employment services and a scan of related promising practices informed the development of two surveys – one for Burnaby employers and the other for job seeking newcomers in Burnaby. The input and data collected in these two surveys have been analyzed and summarized into the reports below. The scan of promising practices can also be found here.

Approaches to Recruiting, Hiring and Volunteering for Recent Immigrants in Burnaby

Accessibility and Coordination of Immigrant Focused Employment Services in Burnaby

Web Scan of Promising Practices Connecting Immigrants with Employers

>> Burnaby Workplace Ambassadors

During the Burnaby Workplace Ambassadors Program, 35 Internationally Trained Professionals (ITPs), new to Burnaby, received focused training and supporting resources on communication and networking. Once training was complete, the ambassadors were introduced to a professional within their field and a 45-minute meeting was set up. These professionals then referred participants to colleagues and contacts. The 35 ITP ambassadors engaged with more than 240 employers in discussions about immigrant workforce integration by the end of the project. Many of these employers reviewed and discussed their own recruiting and hiring practices and shared the experience with their colleagues.

To view photos from the Burnaby Workplace Ambassadors Project, click here.

>> Burnaby Workplace Ambassadors Profiles

The Burnaby Workplace Ambassadors Profiles were developed to promote the best and promising practices learned from the Burnaby Workplace Ambassadors Project. They include participant testimonials on the barriers and challenges faced by newcomers, job seekers and employers, best and promising employer practices, and success stories and testimonials related to immigrant workforce integration and employer engagement. The profiles are organized into six key occupational sectors in Burnaby and are supported by information on current local labour market information and workplace inclusion initiatives.

Burnaby’s Clean Technology Sector Profile

Burnaby’s Construction Sector Profile

Burnaby’s Education Sector Profile

Burnaby’s Financial Services Sector Profile

Burnaby’s IT Sector Profile

Burnaby’s Life Sciences Sector Profile

>> Breaking Down the Barriers

Breaking Down the Barriers was a campaign to educate employers, businesses and the wider Burnaby community about the value of integrating new immigrants in the workplace.

The BIPT led Employment Forums in 2010 and 2011 and workplace tours and produced an Employment Forum Survey to connect immigrants to local businesses. To read and view additional Breaking Down the Barriers resources, click the below links.

>> Forums

To view photos from the BIPT’s 2011 Employment Forum, click here.

To view photos from the BIPT’s 2010 Employment Forum, click here.

>> Workplace Tours

To view photos from the IT Tour, click here.

To view photos from the Health Care Tour, click here.

To view photos from the Engineering Tour, click here.

To view photos from the Finance and Accounting Tour, click here.

To view photos from the Green Technology Tour, click here.

>> Survey

To read the BIPT Employment Forum Survey, click here.

>> BIPT Inter-Faith Dialogues

The Burnaby Intercultural Planning Table has organized and facilitated several inter-faith dialogues. The Strengthening Inter-Faith Bridges dialogues built on the very successful Sharing Experiences & Building Bridges project undertaken in 2010/2011. These dialogues aim to increase awareness and understanding among diverse faith groups, strengthen participation in faith communities, increase partnerships between faith groups and develop a plan to facilitate ongoing collaboration between faith groups.

To view photos of the BIPT’s inter-faith dialogues, click the below links.

Inter-Faith Dialogue – March 2013

Inter-Faith Dialogue – February 2013

Inter-Faith Dialogue – November 2012

>> Inter-Faith Newsletters

The BIPT created newsletters to provide information about efforts to facilitate inter-faith dialogues in Burnaby. Links to newsletters can be found below.

Strengthening the Inter-Faith Bridges in Burnaby – June 2013

Strengthening the Inter-Faith Bridges in Burnaby – April 2013

Strengthening the Inter-Faith Bridges in Burnaby – March 2013

Strengthening the Inter-Faith Bridges in Burnaby – December 2012/January 2013

>> Scams, Fraud, Internet Safety and Cyberbullying – Tips for Youth, Parents and Seniors

In October 2019,  the BIPT hosted a Community Forum on Understanding Scams, Fraud and Cyberbullying for Newcomers Seniors, Adults/Parents and Youth at the Byrne Creek Community School.

The objectives of the forum were to increase knowledge of frontline workers of non-profit, settlement service, community, public sector and other service providers about scams, fraud and cyberbullying affecting different demographics (Seniors, Adult/parents and Youth).  A resource booklet was created and translated into Arabic, English, Farsi, Korean, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, and Tigrinya.

>> Embracing Diversity: Sharing Our Songs and Rhymes

The Embracing Diversity project features video performances of children’s songs and rhymes in 15 languages, plus resources to support the use of these materials. These are offered to inspire sharing across cultures, help families and community workers promote cross-cultural understanding, and improve our ability to create welcoming, inclusive communities. We invite you to learn, share songs and rhymes and explore the cultural diversity of Burnaby and New Westminster’s communities.

To find out more about the Embracing Diversity project, click here.