Support for Government Assisted Refugees

When GARs first land in Canada, they are enrolled into the Resettlement Assistance Program (RAP)—a federally-funded program under Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) that provides income support for up to one year, as well as primary initial settlement services to GARs that can take up to six weeks. The main services delivered include:

  • Welcoming and meeting refugees at the airport or port of entry
  • Provision of temporary accommodation
  • Assistance in finding permanent accommodation
  • Provision of basic household items and incidentals
  • Orientation sessions to life in Canada
  • Referrals to other settlement and community services

After RAP, GARs are transitioned into the Client Support Services (CSS) Program, where they typically remain between 12 and 18 months. The objective of the CSS program is to provide an intensive and systematic client-centered case management approach that will provide GARs with a warm, welcoming and safe environment; the essential supports for a more positive settlement experience in Canada and to empower GARs to become independent.

Specifically, the CSS Program activities reflect the following objectives:

  1. Provide the core elements of a holistic case management approach with GARs in a desk free and mobile fashion to where clients are located
  2. Improve GARs’ access to community services in a manner that does not overlap with settlement funded services/programs
  3. Engage community agencies in providing support services to GARs
  4. Monitor and evaluate program activities against specific program goals and refine these activities/models if needed
  5. Document and monitor the provision of long-term settlement support to GARs including data collection, evaluation of activities and quality assurance practices
  6. Create a national framework for reporting on GARs that is distributed to the government and other external stakeholders

After the completion of the CSS program, GARs are referred to settlement services available to them and other newcomers in their communities, so that they can continue their integration into Canadian life.

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One way the settlement process for GARs in Canada can look like from the moment of their arrival.