Pathway for Economic Class Newcomers

From Settlement AtWork Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
See also: Pathway for Refugee Claimants


  • Link up the boxes with the resources below
  • Discuss flashanimationalising this

I used the following extension, the page explains how image maps on the mediawiki platform works::

And I used the following tool to create the box points more easily (the regions on the image that when clicked push the user to a link):

The map

Click on the boxes below for more information
Permanent Housing (Market and Subsidized)First Three Months Health Coverage#SIN (Social Insurance Number) Card ApplicationTemporary HousingHotel/MotelShort-term housing#Settlement or Newcomer info Centre#First Days in Canada - Orientation Package#Interpretation and TranslationCanadian Banking SystemDaily Life#Develop Community Connections#Health Care SystemFamily Resource Programs#Apply for Tax BenefitsEducation SystemDaycare#LINC (Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada) assessment#LINC (Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada) classes#Job Search Support.2FWorkshopsDriver's LicenceOHIP (after 3 months)Income SupportsCredential AssessmentContinuing EducationStarting Your Own BusinessRights and ResponsibilitiesWorkers' RightsApply for Canadian CitizenshipCitizenship ClassesCitizenship TestCanadian CitizenTemporary HousingResidency RequirementsIncome Tax SystemFinancial LiteracyToronto Public LibraryCommunity Recreation CentresNewcomer OrientationFamily DoctorResumesBridgingMentoringCoachingCanadian CultureImmunizationsPre-arrival (online) social networksEducation Loans (OSAP)ApprenticeshipRegister children in schoolDental CareCanada's Labour MarketGetting Canadian Work ExperienceProfessional LicensingNewcomer rights and responsibilitiesCivic ParticipationELT (Enhanced Language Training) ClassesPathway-economic-all2.png
About this image
Table of content



Feel free to click "Edit" on any of the sections below to edit the information

Upon arrival & first few weeks

Pre-Arrival (online) Social Networks

Online Social Networks

Online Information and Resources

First Days in Canada - Orientation Package

Although newcomer orientation can be provided in many different formats, the contents of it are often similar. These are the most common topics:

  1. Services for Newcomers in the Community
  2. Finding a place to live
  3. Applying for a Social Insurance Number
  4. Applying for a health insurance card
  5. Employment and access to professions and trades
  6. Education
  7. Social Benefits
  8. Canadian Law
  9. Your rights and obligations

Here is an example of a Newcomer Orientation guide from

First Three Months Health Coverage

Newcomers to Canada do not receive health coverage (OHIP) for the first 3 months after arrival in Ontario. However, newcomers are required to have private insurance to cover their health care in the event of an accident or a hospital stay. If you require a doctor during this time, you may visit a 'Walk-in Clinic' or make an appointment with a doctor who is accepting new patients (both these options will accept private health care insurance) See below for private health care insurance options.

Another option is to visit your local 'Community Health Centre' (CHC).

Community Health Centres

Community Health Centres (CHCs) are non-profit community-based agencies. They are funded to provide support to their local neighbourhood including providing services for people without OHIP (they have strict geographic boundaries and will only be able to provide service to those living in their catchment area). CHC's are governed by a board of directors which includes local residents and professionals. Besides primary care (health care provided by doctors and nurses) they also provide community health care - programs and education on preventative health care, nutrition and healthy eating, pre and post natal care, education and employment programs. They also offer 3 months free health care for newcomers, provided they have staff and time availability.(Some other conditions apply - please call for details). Community Health Centres do not provide emergency care or 'walk-in' services.

Private Health Insurance

  1. Ontario Blue Cross 1-866-732-2583
    (Outside Canada call collect 1-514-286-8411)
  2. ETFS Travel Insurance 1-866-566-0017
    (Outside Canada call collect 1-819-566-8839)
  3. TIC Travel Insurance 1-800-670-4426
    (Outside Canada call collect 1-416-340-0049)
  4. For other Insurance companies go to the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association (CLHIA)

SIN (Social Insurance Number) Card Application

What is it?

  • To work in Canada, you must have a social insurance number.
  • It is the most important document because you will use it for life as long as you live in Canada.
  • Revenue Canada uses this number to identify people who earn money through work, pay taxes, contribute to pension plans and use government services.
  • It is an offense to use someone else's SIN card, loan or sell your SIN card, to have more than one SIN card. The penalty for these offenses is a fine and/or imprisonment.You can apply for SIN number in person at the Service Canada offices.

Temporary Housing

When you are in Canada or the U.S., you can call Tourism Ontario at 1-800-ONTARIO (1-800-668-2746). Tourism Ontario can help you to find a room and make a reservation. This service is free.

Short-term housing


Bed and Breakfast

Housing Help Centres

(non-profit agencies will help you find housing)

Click here for a list of all the Housing Help Centres in Toronto

First six months

Settlement or Newcomer info Centre

Initial Assessment

Most Settlement and Employment services conduct an initial needs assessment for newcomers who want to use these services. The purpose of the needs assessment is to better evaluate and understand client's situation. Because of the funding requirements, you will be expected to show your Permanent Resident Card (for settlement services) or SIN card (for employment services). Here are a list of non-profit community settlement agencies.

Canadian Banking System

Canada has one of the safest banking systems in the world. There are 22 domestic banks in operation. Below is the list of the "Big Five Canadian Banks" in order from largest to smallest, these 5 banks plus the Bank of Canada account for 90% of the assests of the Canadian banking business. There are other banks in operation in Canada (78 in total, including American, European and other international banks). The Canadian Bankers Association website has lots of information about understanding credit, savings and investing, small business loans and more. Click on

Opening a Personal Bank Account: Understanding Your Rights

Under Canadian law, you have the right to open a personal bank account even if:

  • you don't have a job
  • you don't have money to put in the account right away
  • you have been bankrupt.

Exceptions: The bank can refuse to open an account for you if they suspect you have committed a crime related to any bank, if you harass or threaten a bank employee, or if you show false identification.

To open an account, you have to:

  • go to the bank in person, and
  • show the bank some identification (ID).

You must use original ID, not photocopies.

For more information, call the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) toll free at: 1-866-461-3222.

Income Tax System

  • Both the federal and provincial government impose taxes on individuals. Federal taxes are collected by Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) (formerly known as Revenue Canada) and are governed by the Income Tax Act.
  • These taxes account for 40% of the governments' revenue and are used to provide Canadians with everything from clean water, roads, health care, education, peace keeping and programs for children and seniors.
  • All taxes in Canada are 'progressive', the more you make, the higher percentage of income tax you pay.
  • Taxes are filed every year before April 30th for the previous year. Click here to find out if you are required to file a tax return.
  • Under the law, individuals who fail to file a return as required, or who fail to comply with a court order to file, are liable to a fine of $1,000 to $25,000 and up to 12 months imprisonment, as well as having to pay their unpaid taxes with interest.
  • For more information on the Canadian tax system, you can download a free training program from the Canada Revue Agency.

Financial Literacy

Financial literacy is a program which provides youth, newcomers, women and persons with disabilities access to current and relevant information that leads to better understanding of money management skills in peoples’ daily lives. The ability to make informed financial decisions is essential for basic functioning in Canadian society as in all countries with complex financial systems. These decisions range from simple daily spending and budgeting, to choice of insurance, banking or investment products, to saving for major life events like retirement and education, or purchases like a home. These individual and household decisions and behaviors have profound impacts on the financial security, well being and inclusion of individuals and families.

Financial literacy workshops cover over 40 financial topics including Budgeting 101: How to effectively manage the money you have, Credit and You: Learning about credit and how to use it wisely and Banking Services in Canada: Understanding the basics.

Financial Literacy workshops are available at select United Way Toronto membership agencies, which offer them to agency recipients. They are open to all low-income individuals who require assistance with their finances. All workshops are free.

To find out which agencies offer financial literacy workshops, call 211 or visit 211Toronto website

Toronto Public Library

  • The Toronto Public Library is free to all residents and visitors. Everyone is welcome to go to the library and use the material on site. To borrow material, you must apply for a library card. A library card is free to anyone who lives, works, goes to school or owns property in the City of Toronto.
  • As a visitor, you may apply for a non-resident card for a fee of $30.00 for 3 months.
  • With a library card, you can borrow books, movies, CDs and use the computer.
  • Materials that are borrowed from the library are required to be returned by the due date - if your materials are overdue, you will be required to pay a fine, per day, per item.
  • Library branches also have many programs and services for children, newcomers and residents - see your local library for a schedule of events.
  • To find a library in your neighbourhood click here.
  • Click here to see the fee schedule.
  • For more information on the Toronto Public Library, see their website

Community Recreation Centres

  • The City of Toronto runs a number of Community Recreation Centres. These centres are places for families to play and learn and they provide social and recreational programs including swimming, skating, basketball, after-school programs and exercise programs. Many of the programs are free to residents although some programs require a fee.
  • To find a centre near you, click here

Daily Life


The TTC (Toronto Transit Commission) is the public transit for the City of Toronto. The TTC includes buses, streetcars and the subway.

Some tips for using the TTC:

  • A fare allows you to travel in one direction across the city without stops. Once you stop (to shop or run other errands) you must pay another fare.
  • Always carry a transfer (which you must get where you paid your fare - from a bus/streetcar driver or from a machine at the subway).
  • If you are doing several trips in one day - purchase a day pass which will give you unlimited travelling for the day
  • Monthly pass (Metropass) and tokens are available - these are cheaper than paying cash
  • Always wait for buses and streetcars to stop before you step out on to the street

For more information, routes and fares go to the TTC website: or contact TTC Customer Information office from 8am- 6pm (except statutory holidays) at 416-393-4636.


Grocery Stores

  • Valu-Mart
    Danforth and Woodbine
    Google Map location?
  • Beach Valu-Mart
    Queen and Kingston Rd
    Google Map location?

Pharmacies/Drug Stores

  • Shoppers Drug Mart
    Danforth and Pape
  • Shoppers Drug Mart
    Broadview and Danforth
  • Shoppers Drug Mart
    Lakeshore and Leslie

Department Stores

  • Zellers
    Danforth and Victoria Park

Thrift Stores (second hand/used merchandise)

Driver's Licence

A foreign driver's licence is valid for 60 days after you arrive in Canada. The length of time you have been driving and the country or province you may have come from affect the process of getting a driver's licence. To apply for a licence, you must show your valid foreign licence, pass a written test of your knowledge of Ontario's traffic rules, pass a vision test and pay the fees. You must also provide the original documents that confirm your identity and date of birth. You should visit a Driver Examination Centre first.

There are only 4 Driver Examination Centres in Toronto:

  1. Toronto Downsview
    Downsview Park
    37 Carl Hall Road
    Toronto, ON M3K 2E2
  2. Toronto Etobicoke
    Centenial Park Plaza
    5555 Eglinton Ave. W.
    Etobicoke, ON M9C 5M1
  3. Toronto Metro East
    Victoria Terrace Plaza
    1448 Lawrence Ave E., Unit 15
    North York, ON M4A 2S8
  4. Toronto Port Union
    The Village of Abbey Lane Shopping Centre
    91 Rylander Blvd., Unit #109A
    Scarborough, ON M1B 5M5

Driver and Vehicle Licensing

Newcomers who bring a car or truck from another country have 30 days to register their vehicles and get Ontario licence plates and vehicle permits. Visit one of the Driver and Vehicle Licence Issuing Offices.

  1. ServiceOntario Lakeshore
    1015 Lake Shore Boulevard East

Rights and Responsibilities

Tenant Rights

The Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) is the law that governs the relationship between most property owners and tenants. Once you have found the right place for you and your family, it is recommended that you sign a lease. A lease is a legal agreement between you and the landlords. It usually indicates the length of tenancy, the amount of rent and the terms of the rental relationship, like whether the utilities are included in the rent, or if the property owner will provide an air-conditioner. Make sure you read and understand every word. If you don't understand it, you can call the Tenant Hotline at 416-921-9494 for help.

  • According to the Ontario Human rights Code, it is illegal for a property owner to refuse to rent to you because of your: race, colour, age, sex, sexual orientation, religion, ancestry, ethnic origin, family status, or your place of origin.
  • You are allowed to have children in your apartment
  • you do not have to renew your lease when it expires, you automatically become a month-to-month tenant
  • All the terms of your original lease continue even if you do not sign a new lease

As a tenant, you:

  • must pay your rent on time. Usually, the rent is due on the first day of each month. your lease will tell you when your rent is due.
  • must keep your apartment clean and put garbage in the proper place.
  • cannot let extra people live in the apartment. Visitors may stay with you for a few days or weeks, but not for a long time.
  • cannot disturb other tenants.

As a tenant, you have the right to:

  • A clean, well-maintained home with electricity, heat, running water and appliances (fridge and stove) that work.
  • Privacy. Usually, a landlord must give you a letter 24 hours before entering your apartment. In an emergency, such as a fire or flood, your landlord may enter without notifying you.
  • End your tenancy within the time allowed in the lease or by law.

For more information visit [1].

Consumer Rights

Consumer Rights are protected by the Consumer Protection Act (2002). According to the Act:

  • You may be entitled to a cooling off period. Let’s say you make a purchase or sign a contract in your home and then change your mind. If the deal is worth more than $50, you have the right to cancel within 10 days and get your money back. It’s best to cancel by registered mail or fax.
  • Remedies must be timely. When you take advantage of your 10-day cooling off period and notify the company (preferably in writing) that you have changed your mind, the company has 15 days to return your money. The business has the right to take back the goods provided under the agreement by either picking them up or paying for the cost of sending them back.
  • If you are sent goods you didn’t ask for, you don’t have to accept or pay for them. In fact, you may use them or throw them out. You’re not responsible for an unsolicited credit card either – unless you buy something with it.
  • Pre-paid goods or services over $50 must have a written contract. When some part of the contract occurs in the future (e.g. a gym membership), written contracts are required for goods or services worth more than $50. The contract must contain complete details of the transaction and full disclosure of any credit terms.
  • Contracts must be clear and understandable. Vague language is discouraged in contracts. All required information must be clear, prominent and easy to understand. If there is a dispute over unclear language,it must be interpreted in favour of the consumer by law.
  • Misrepresentation is illegal. All charges in a contract must be what they say they are. For example, a business may not add a $20 surcharge for a “tax” that is not really for tax. Make sure you understand what each charge is for and that it’s valid.
  • Sales incentives may not be false, misleading or deceptive. A salesperson can offer you an incentive to help find other buyers, but the description of the incentive cannot be false, misleading or deceptive.
  • Consumer agreements must disclose all details. If a company isn’t delivering on its contract with you, or if you encounter an aspect of the deal the company was required to disclose by law but didn’t, you have the right to cancel within one year.
  • Your goods cannot be repossessed if you have paid 2/3 or more. If you have paid at least two-thirds of the cost of your goods, a seller can’t take them back from you except by court order. But remember, if you miss a payment, the seller can take you to court to get full payment, and this could hurt your credit rating
  • Deliveries must be on time. If a delivery doesn’t arrive within 30 days of the promised date, you can cancel the contract by sending a cancellation letter. But you lose the right to cancel the agreement if you accept delivery after the 30 days.

For more information visit Ontario Ministry of Consumer Services website.

Apply for Tax Benefits

Canada Child Tax Benefit

If you have children under 18, the Government of Canada may be able to help you with some of the costs of raising them. This monthly tax-free payment is called the Canada Child Tax Benefit. The amount of the benefit is based on several factors, such as your family income, the number of children you have and their ages, and your province or territory of residence.

Application forms:

GST/HST Credit

The GST is a tax that you pay on most goods and services sold or provided in Canada. In Ontario the GST has been blended with the provincial sales tax and is called the HST. The GST/HST credit helps individuals and families with low or modest incomes offset all or part of the GST or HST that they pay.

Application form:

Permanent Housing (Market and Subsidized)

If you need assistance finding permanent housing, you can visit your local Housing Help Centre. There are nine Housing Help Centres in Toronto - each with a defined catchment area. Click here to find a location near you.

The East York Housing Help Centre has developed a website with lots of information on finding housing and other resources. You can find them here

Subsidized Housing

Subsidized housing is housing where the amount of rent paid is a percentage of the tenants’ income, not the value of the unit. This is called Rent Geared-to-Income (RGI). Tenants pay 30% of their income towards rent. For example, if the family’s total monthly income is $2000 – they will pay $600 rent for a unit. The remaining amount of the rent is subsidized by the Province of Ontario through the City of Toronto to a number of housing providers who manage the properties. The largest organization of subsidized housing is the Toronto Community Housing Corporation with over 164,000 tenants. There is a long waiting list for RGI housing in Toronto. RGI units are located in many different types of non-profit housing. To apply, go to Housing Connections. If you need assistance, please visit a Housing Help Centre and they can assist you in filling out the form. For more information, check this page.

Market Housing

Market housing is housing that is owned by an individual or company who rents out units or rooms for profit. The rent for these units are determined by the market and decided by the landlord (owner). Once you are a tenant in a unit - the landlord can raise the rent only by the amount determined by the province. However, when a unit is empty - the landlord can determine any amount to charge - whatever a tenant is willing to pay. There are many websites that list units for rent - check this page for a list of websites.

Co-operative (Co-Op) Housing

Co-ops are non-profit housing units that contain both market and subsidized units. The building is run and managed by the tenants who live there and the rent is determined by the residents. Rents are usually cheaper in these buildings as the charge is enough only to cover the costs plus a little extra for a contingency fund. Any extra money at the end of the year is put back into the building for upgrades or repairs. The co-op is governed by a board of directors elected by the residents and all building operations is determined by the residents. Each co-op is an individual entity and therefore applications must be made to the individual co-op. Most co-ops have very long waiting lists. Click here for a list of Co-ops in Toronto Co-operative Housing Federation of Toronto.

Family Resource Programs

Family support programs are community-based organizations working with children, families and caregivers to enhance strengths, to build capacities and to promote healthy development.

Family support programs deliver a range of services guided by principles that focus on building supportive relationships, facilitating growth, respecting diversity and furthering community development.

Services are flexible, accessible and offered in an informal atmosphere. These services may be provided in partnership with other groups.

Family support services include: child development, community development, community outreach, counseling and mediation, drop-in programs, early learning and care, educational upgrading, employment assistance, family literacy, food and nutrition support, parent and caregiver support, parent education, peer contact and mutual support, play and recreation, promotion of health and safety, referrals to other resources and toy lending

Family Resource Programs in Toronto East

  • East York East Toronto Family Resources - Donlands
    280 Donlands Ave
  • East York East Toronto Family Resources - Danforth
    3079 Danforth Ave
  • Massey Centre
    Broadview and Pottery Rd

Develop Community Connections

Places of Worship

Cultural Activities

Income Supports

Ontario Works

Ontario Works program provides financial assistance to residents without income. Financial assistance includes money for food, shelter, clothing and other household costs for people who meet the financial and program criteria. You can apply for Ontario Works online any time:

or by telephone:

Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP)

The Ontario Disability Support Program helps people with disabilities who are in financial need pay for living expenses, like food and housing. You can visit, call or write to your local Ontario Disability Support Program office for information about the program.

  • Toronto East Office:
    Ministry of Community and Social Services
    Ontario Disability Support Program
    Income Support
    770 Birchmount Rd. Unit #30
    Scarborough, ON M1K 5H3

For OW and ODSP rates:

Employment Insurance

Employment insurance provides temporary financial assistance for unemployed Canadians while they look for a job. Employment insurance may be available to people who are on maternal, parental, sickness and compassionate care leave from their work.

Senior's Benefits

Old Age Security Program (OAS)

Old Age security Program provides seniors with a modest pension at age 65 if they have lived in Canada for at least 10 years."

Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS)

The Guaranteed Income Supplement provides additional money, on top of the Old Age Security pension, to low-income seniors living in Canada."

Canada Pension Plan (CPP)

The Canada Pension Plan (CPP) provides contributors and their families with retirement, disability, survivor, death and children’s benefits. "

Residency Requirement

Permanent residents must meet a residency obligation, which means that they must live in Canada for at least 730 days (two years) in any five-year period or they can lose their status. These 730 days do not have to be consecutive.

To meet the obligation, you must be physically present in Canada unless you are outside the country for one of the following reasons:

  • you are with your spouse or common-law partner who is a Canadian citizen or, if you are a child, you are with your parent who is a Canadian citizen,
  • you are working full-time for a Canadian business or the federal or a provincial public service,
  • you are with a spouse or common-law partner who is a permanent resident and is working full-time for a Canadian business or the federal or a provincial public service or, if you are a child, you are with your parent who is a permanent resident and is working full-time for one of these employers.

No matter how long you have lived in Canada, you can lose your permanent resident status and be required to leave Canada for any of the following reasons:

  • You lived outside Canada for more than three years in any five-year period.
  • You used false documents when you applied for permanent residence.
  • You gave false or incomplete information when you applied for permanent residence, when you were granted permanent residence, or in any other immigration application or procedure.
  • You were sponsored by someone who gave false or incomplete information on the sponsorship application, on their own application for permanent residence, or on any other immigration application or procedure.
  • You were able to apply for permanent residence because your claim for refugee protection was accepted by the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) and that decision has been set aside because you gave false or incomplete information on your claim.
  • There were conditions on your permanent resident status but you did not fulfill them.
  • Before or after you became a permanent resident, you were convicted of or committed a crime outside Canada that is considered serious based on the sentence that could have been given, even if you were not given that sentence. An exception can be made if at least five years have passed since you committed the crime, or since your sentence ended, and if you can prove to Canadian authorities that you have been rehabilitated.
  • Before or after you became a permanent resident, you were convicted in Canada of a crime that is considered serious based on the sentence that was or could have been given, unless you have received a pardon.
  • CIC believes that you have been, or will be, involved in espionage, subversion, or terrorism, or that you are a security risk for some other reason.
  • CIC believes that you have been, or will be, involved in organized crime or that you have belonged to a criminal organization even if you have not committed a crime.
  • CIC believes that you have been involved in people smuggling, human trafficking, or money laundering.
  • CIC believes that you committed war crimes or crimes against humanity outside Canada.
  • CIC believes that you were a senior member of or official in a government that was guilty of war crimes or crimes against humanity, or of terrorism or gross human rights violations.

If you are deported from Canada, your dependent children who are not Canadian citizens may also have to leave.

Education System

Elementary School Ages 4-13 (Kindergarten to Grade 8)

  • Toronto District School Board (TDSB)
    Open to all students
    Go directly to your local school to register. To find a local school call 416-394-7526 or check online at
    TDSB Street Guide:
  • Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB)
    Open only to Catholic children or children of Catholic parents. Baptismal certificate required for admittance.
    Registration for Kindergarten & French Immersion begins in January
    Call the Orientation Centre for an appointment
    700 Markham St

Secondary School Ages 14-17 (Grades 9-12)

  • Toronto District School Board (TDSB)
    Open to all students. Visit the Greenwood Reception Centre:
    24 Mountjoy Ave
    The centre will conduct an assessment of English proficiency and math skills. Please bring Immigration papers, two pieces proof of address, school documents and immunization records.
  • Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB)
    Open to all students
    Call the Orientation Centre for an appointment
    700 Markham St

Credential Assessment

Before you proceed with your credential assessment, determine the purpose of the assessment.

Do you wish to go to school - continue or upgrade your education? If so, contact the admissions office or the department of the university or college you are applying to obtain information on credential assessment. Or is it for employment purposes?"

Here are a list of assessment centres:

  • World Education Services
    45 Charles St. Suite 700
    Toronto, ON
    toll free 866-343-0070
  • Comparative Education Services
    School of Continuing Studies
    158 St. George Street
    Toronto, Ontario M5S 2V8
  • International Credentials Assessment Service
    Ontario AgriCentre
    100 Stone Road West, Suite 303
    Guelph ON N1G 5L3

Continuing Education

Continuing education are courses, seminars and workshops that let you develop your knowledge and skills in a specific area. Continuing education courses are offered to adults in the community by local school boards, colleges and universities. Some continuing education courses offer a certificate at the end of the individual course or at the and of a course series.


Community Colleges

Education Loans (OSAP)

  • Grants and Bursaries


Apprenticeship is a combination of on-the-job training and related classroom instruction under the supervision of a trade professional in which workers learn the practical and theoretical aspects of a highly skilled trade.

After completing both the classroom and the on-the-job training, apprentices can receive journeyperson certification or a certificate of qualification, allowing them to earn a higher wage and work anywhere in Canada. Depending on the trade, it takes about 2 to 5 years as an apprentice to become a certified journeyperson. About 80% of the training is in the workplace; the rest is at a training institution.

Over 200 apprenticeship training programs are currently available across Canada. Each province and territory has its own training and certification policies and its own list of designated apprenticeship programs. For more information visit Pathways to Apprenticeship Ontario website

Register children in school

Elementary School Ages 4-13 (Kindergarten to Grade 8)

  • Toronto District School Board (TDSB)
    Open to all students
    Go directly to your local school to register. To find a local school call 416-394-7526 or check online at
    TDSB Street Guide:
  • Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB)
    Open only to Catholic children or children of Catholic parents. Baptismal certificate required for admittance.
    Registration for Kindergarten & French Immersion begins in January
    Call the Orientation Centre for an appointment
    700 Markham St

Secondary School Ages 14-17 (Grades 9-12)

  • Toronto District School Board (TDSB)
    Open to all students. Visit the Greenwood Reception Centre :
    24 Mountjoy Ave
    The centre will conduct an assessment of English proficiency and math skills. Please bring Immigration papers, two pieces proof of address, school documents and immunization records.
  • Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB)
    Open to all students
    Call the Orientation Centre for an appointment
    700 Markham St


Municipal Child Care Centres in Toronto East

  • Blake Street
    84 Blake St.
  • Blake Street Satellite
    21 Boultebee Ave. Rm 104
  • Coxwell
    1631 Queen St. East
  • Danforth
    1125 Danforth Ave.
  • O'Connor
    1386 Victoria Park Ave.
  • O'Connor School Age Satellite
    1665 O'Connor Dr.
  • Parkside
    401 Cedarvale Ave.
  • Woodbine
    700 Milverton Blvd.

Other Child Care

  • Annie's Place (EYET) located in Secord Public School
    91 Barrington Ave.
  • Children's Circle Day Care
    175 Hampton Ave.
  • Debbie Yeung Child Care (WoodGreen)
    249 Cosburn Ave.
  • Earl Haig Community Day Care Centre
    15 Earl Haig Ave.
  • East City Child Care Centre (YMCA)
    907 Kingston Rd.
  • Enderby Child Care (WoodGreen)
    118 Enderby Rd.
  • George Webster Child Care Centre (YMCA)
    2 Cedarcrest Blvd.
  • Leslieville Child Care (WoodGreen)
    Leslieville Public School
  • McGregor Jr. Child Care Centre (YMCA)
    555 Mortimer Ave.
  • Morse Street Child Care (WoodGreen)
    180 Carlaw Ave.
  • Riverdale Child Care (WoodGreen)
    Riverdale Collegiate, 1094 Gerrard St. East
  • Win Harris Child Care (WoodGreen)
    835 Queen Street East
  • Woodfield Child Care (WoodGreen)
    70 Woodfield Rd.

Home Child Care Providers

Child Care Fee Subsidy

Child care fee subsidy helps families with the cost of child care. Fee subsidy is available on a first-come, first-served basis and there is a very long waiting list so apply as early as possible.

Health Care System

In Ontario, the government-run health plan is called the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP). Most basic and emergency health care services are covered by OHIP.

  • An Ontario resident must have a health card to show that he or she is entitled to health care services paid by OHIP.
  • There is a three-month waiting period for newcomers before their OHIP coverage starts.
  • Even if you do not have a health card, hospitals and physicians must provide you with emergency health care services. You may be charged for these services.

What health services does OHIP cover?

  • visits to your family doctor and specialists.
  • the cost of a bed in a standard ward, but not in a private or semi-private room.
  • annual eye examinations for people over 65 and under 20.
  • physiotherapy services if provided in a hospital.
  • prescription drugs if administered while staying in a hospital.

There are some services that OHIP does not pay for. These are services that are not medically needed, such as cosmetic surgery.

Travel costs: if you live in northern Ontario and must travel long distances for specialty medical care, OHIP may pay some travel costs.

Talk to a health care professional to find out if a procedure or treatment is covered by OHIP. You can also contact the Ministry of Health INFOline: In Ontario (toll free): 1-800-268-1154 In Toronto: 416-314-5518 TTY: 1-800-387-5559

If you travel outside of Ontario or Canada OHIP may cover some costs.

Community Health Centres

Community Health Centres (CHCs) are non-profit community-based agencies. They are funded to provide support to their local neighbourhood including providing services for people without OHIP. They offer 3 months free health care for newcomers - some conditions apply - please call for details)

OHIP (after 3 months)

Newcomers can apply for OHIP (Ontario Health Insurance Plan) 3 months after their arrival in Canada.

Application form and required supplementary documents:

Family Doctor

The College of Physicians and Surgeons has a "doctors search" service.

You can also register with Health Care Connect

Dental Care

OHIP does not pay for regular visits to a dentist. OHIP only pays for some dental surgery including fractures or medically necessary jaw reconstruction when done in hospital.

Dental care is very expensive. Many people who work full-time have a dental plan or dental benefits paid by their employer. This is an insurance to pay for dental care and each insurance plan is different.

Toronto Public Health provides free dental care for seniors and children. Call 416-338-7442 for more information.

Low cost dental care is also provided by education institutions where services are provided by dentistry or dental hygiene students:

  • University of Toronto 416-979-4927 (adults)
  • University of Toronto 416-979-4925 x 4319 (children)
  • George Brown College 416-415-4547


All school age children must have up to date immunizations before they register for school.

The Toronto Public Health website has information on immunization schedules, vaccine fact sheets and immunization and pregnancy.

For more information call 416-392-1250

Interpreters are available Monday to Friday 8:30 to 4:30


Canada's Labour Market

Job Search Support/Workshops

Many community agencies have employment services for newcomers to Toronto. Many of these services are free or low-cost.

Employment Counselling

  • Neighbourhood Link Support Services
  • Newcomer Women's Services Toronto
  • Riverdale Immigrant Women's Centre
  • Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office
  • WoodGreen Community Services

Job Search Workshop for Newcomers (JSW)

Job Search Workshops are condensed three- or four-day workshops for newcomers who are legally entitled to work in Canada. They focus on job search techniques and on accessing labour market information.

Employment Resource Centres

  • Neighbourhood Link Support Services, Job Squad
    Crescent Town Club, 2A The Market Place
    For Youth 15-29 years
    3036 Danforth Ave.
  • WoodGreen Community Services
  • Ontario Employment Services
    1. East York Employment Centre
      Building 1, Unit 4, 1450 O'Connor Dr.
    2. Danforth Avenue Site
      989 Danforth Ave.
      416-462-3110 ext2218
    3. Queen Street East Site
      1080 Queen St. East
      416-462-3110 ext 2316

Getting Canadian Work Experience



Bridging programs help internationally trained professionals and tradespeople access to their professions in Ontario.

Mentoring Programs

Mentoring Programs bring together recent skilled newcomers and established professionals in occupation-specific mentoring relationships.

List of community agencies providing mentoring programs:


LINC (Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada) assessment

LINC is an English training program for adult newcomers. YMCA LINC Assessment Centres screen and refer newcomers to the most suitable LINC Service Provider Organizations offering LINC classes. These free classes range from literacy, basic to intermediate levels running part time, full time and on weekends. Some of schools also offer free Child minding services.

LINC (Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada) classes

  • Jones Avenue Adult Centre
    540 Jones Ave.
  • Danforth LINC
    2944 Danforth Ave.
  • Newcomer Women's Services Toronto
    745 Danforth Ave.
  • WoodGreen Community Services
    1491 Danforth Ave.
    416-645-6000 x2200
  • Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office
    18 Thorncliffe Park Dr.

ELT Classes (Enhanced Language Training)

ELT programs provide advanced-level English language training to adult newcomers. Through job-specific language training, ELT helps newcomers to more easily and quickly find and keep jobs for which they are qualified.

In Toronto East, ELT is offered by WoodGreen Community Services.

  • 1491 Danforth Ave.
    416-645-6000 x2200

Interpretation and Translation

Six months to two years

In-depth personal finance

Starting Your Own Business

General Information

Entrepreneurship Training

Registering Your Business

You can register your business by visiting one of the Enterprise Toronto Locations.

Legal Advice For Business Startups

Connect Legal: Advice For Immigrant Entrepreneurs

Workers' Rights

Employment standards are enforced under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA), which sets out the minimum standards that employers and employees must follow. The ESA includes the rules about minimum wage, public holidays, overtime work, vacation, personal emergency leave, pregnancy and parental leave, termination pay, severance pay and filing a complaint.

The Ontario Ministry of Labour has information about your rights and responsibilities at work.

Canadian Culture

Professional Licensing

Newcomer rights and responsibilities

Civic Participation

Year three

Apply for Canadian Citizenship

To become a Canadian Citizen you must:

  1. Determine if you are eligible to become a citizen.
    • You must be at least 18 years old
    • You must have permanent resident status in Canada and that status must not be in doubt
    • Adults must have lived in Canada for at least three years (1,095 days) in the past four years before applying. Children do not need to meet this requirement.
  2. Apply for citizenship.
  3. Verify the status of your application and prepare for the citizenship test.
  4. Take the citizenship test, if you are between the ages of 18 and 54.
  5. Attend a citizenship ceremony, if you are 14 or older."

Application package:

Citizenship Classes

Citizenship Preparation Programs are for students who have been landed immigrants for at least 3 years and who are ready to take their Canadian Citizenship test. Newcomers learn about citizenship requirements and Canada's history, geography and government system in these classes.

To find a citizenship preparation class, visit TDSB website.

Citizenship Test

Citizenship test study guide: