After his economic address to Surrey with the Surrey Board of Trade on March 3, 2023, DIVERSEcity welcomed the Honourable Premier David Eby to DIVERSEcity’s Surrey Community Campus to meet with our leadership team, including Neelam Sahota, CEO, and Garrison Duke, COO (both in photo above), among others.
Along with Minister Harry Bains (seen in photo above), Minister Rachna Singh — and our Board of Director members: Chair Upkar Singh Tatlay, Sonia Parmar and Cindy Zheng — we talked about the challenges facing British Columbia and the ways forward to prioritize people to build a sustainable and inclusive economy and focus from an intersectional lens on the challenges of today such as housing, employment, mental health and addictions, healthcare and childcare/education.
“We are steadfast in our commitment to our provincial government to be a strong partner to help deliver assistance to British Columbians to meet the moment, especially in Surrey — the fastest growing city in Surrey where we have honed 45 years of on-the-ground expertise, knowledge and partnerships with key stakeholders in our community,” said Neelam Sahota, CEO.
Premier Eby also had the opportunity to meet refugees from Afghanistan who were gathered for a community kitchen workshop led through DIVERSEcity’s South Fraser Refugee Readiness Team, which is supported by funding by the provincial Ministry of Municipal Affairs.
“We thank Premier Eby for presenting our team with the opportunity to discuss the journey of newcomers through the lens of our organization,” said Garrison Duke, COO. “We discussed how impactful our provincially funded programs have been for new Canadians in BC, as well as the much needed supports outlined in budget 2023. The budget funding commitments will provide much need increases in settlement integrated services supports, mental health, housing, affordability and much anticipated training programs, to be launched through the Future Ready Plan. We look forward to future partnerships with our provincial partners, as we work together to improve the overall wellness of all communities in BC.”