Amy’s Story: Starting over

Starting over as a newcomer is never without its challenges. That’s where DIVERSEcity Settlement Services steps in to help people like Amy* find their way and build a successful life in Canada

Here’s Amy’s story …

Amy*, 41, arrived in Nova Scotia from China in 2021, with her two daughters, after which she relocated to British Columbia this February. While her spouse remains in China, Amy embarked on the challenging task of starting a new life as a newcomer in her forties.

In China, Amy worked as a registered nurse and her aspirations in Canada were to continue her career in health care. However, being unfamiliar with the Canadian system, she didn’t know where to begin gathering information about certification requirements, credential evaluation or further skills training.

Amy’s friend then introduced her to DIVERSEcity’s Settlement Services. During her initial needs assessment meeting, when asked if she would prefer to work with a Mandarin-speaking settlement worker, Amy responded with a shy smile but a firm “no.” She wanted to work with a settlement worker in English so she could practise speaking the language.

As they discussed her priorities for her settlement journey, Amy said she wanted to improve her English, find employment and actively participate in Canadian society. “My husband needs to work in China to support us financially, but if I can secure a good job here, my husband can join us, and we can live together,” Amy says.

“During the meeting, she filled a notebook with densely written notes, as if she wanted to capture every piece of information shared,” says Irene, her newcomer information and support worker Irene, who connected Amy with various resources, including English language programs and occupation-specific support and training.

Amy has now obtained her first job in Canada as a part-time caretaker for seniors. Her next step is to pursue a health care assistant certificate, with training starting in September.

Amy’s daughters were also connected to DIVERSEcity’s Power Girls program. Reflecting on their experiences, Amy says she’s so grateful for the invaluable support and information they received.

Learn more about our Settlement Services and register here …


*Name changed for privacy.