H.E.A.L. for Work program: Helene’s story

H.E.A.L. provides hope for women like Helene to succeed in the labour market in Canada

Helene came to Canada in 2019 from China with her family, two master’s degrees and goals to succeed in her new country. A professional career consultant, she settled in Surrey with high hopes, but then the pandemic hit.

“Four months after I moved to Canada, the pandemic happened. I was frustrated because I didn’t have friends and a support system here. I felt so lonely and lonely without any income. That makes me feel very sad,” Helene says.

She heard about DIVERSEcity’s H.E.A.L. for Work program while receiving services at MOSAIC. The H.E.A.L. employment program empowers survivors of violence and trauma to get into the labour market and gain new skills and work experience. The program is offered in English, with language support in Punjabi and Arabic.

“The H.E.A.L. staff encouraged me and give support to me, such as daily emotion check in, small group sharing and employment-related training,” Helene says.

Helene is now working part time as an administrator. “I am still looking forward to my career development as an employment or career officer.”

To other women like herself, she advises: “Don’t stay alone. Join a family like DIVERSEcity, then you will find your strength and supporting system.

“I have a kind of sense of belonging to this program; I did not feel isolated anymore after I joined this program.”

The next session of the H.E.A.L. for Work program begins on September 13, 2021. To learn more, refer, register or attend an information session, please email or visit our website

Photo above is a stock photo.