News

What we’re doing about Covid-19: a message from CEO Neelam Sahota

Important information for staff, partners and clients about our response to COVID-19 and impact on DIVERSEcity programs and services

To all our clients, partners and stakeholders

These are unprecedented times, and DIVERSEcity’s top priority is to ensure the safety of all our employees, partners, volunteers and clients. We want to minimize the spread of the COVID-19 virus, so after careful consideration by our Board of Directors and our senior Leadership Team, we will be closing our DIVERSEcity offices to visitors and clients at the end of the day on March 20, 2020 until further notice.

Given the nature of our services, the reliance of our employees, partners, volunteers and clients on public transit, and the vulnerability of the clients we serve, we feel this is the responsible decision for the safety of our community.

During this time, we will continue to support our clients remotely via email, phone and web options where we can, as we know that they continue to need our support, perhaps now more than ever. We are working to mobilize remote working options for our employees in order to ensure service continuity as much as possible.

We hope you will understand and support our decision. It is not one we take lightly, as we know our clients depend on our services. However, we want to err on the side of caution to do our part to keep the community safe for everyone.

Further details on our response and specific programs and services will be shared daily here. Please bookmark this page and/or follow us on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn) @DIVERSEcityBC to stay up to date with our COVID-19 response.

Let’s work together to prevent the further spread of this virus by social distancing and staying at home where possible! From all of us at DIVERSEcity, we wish you health and safety for yourself and your loved ones.

— Neelam Sahota, Chief Executive Officer, DIVERSEcity


Impact on specific programs and services

Settlement Services

  • For settlement support via phone or email during this time, please contact your Newcomer Information Support Worker, RISE Case Specialist, BC Settlement Services Specialist or Youth Worker directly, or at the following email addresses:
  • All in-person workshops and field trips are postponed until further notice.

Seniors’ Programs

  • For support via phone or email during this time, please contact the Seniors Programs Coordinator at seniors@dcrs.ca.
  • All in-person programming will be postponed until further notice.

Community Services

  • For support and inquiries related to Community Services over phone or email during this time, please contact the following:
  • All in-person programming will be postponed until further notice.

Income Tax Clinics

  • All Income Tax Clinics held at DIVERSEcity Community Campus and at the three Surrey Library Branches (Guildford, Strawberry Hill, City Centre) are postponed until further notice.
  • NOTE: The Government of Canada has announced an extended deadline for personal income tax return filing to June 1, 2020.
  • If you have any questions about the tax clinics or or resources to help you file your taxes,  learn more at www.dcrs.ca/tax or please email volunteer@dcrs.ca

Children’s Programs

  • All face-to-face services and group programs are closed, including the First Steps Spring Break Camps.
  • First Steps and Multicultural Outreach Programs staff are available during regular working hours over the phone and via email to provide first language support and appropriate referrals, as needed. Please contact childrensprograms@dcrs.ca.

Employment Programs

  • Employment Services programs are available via telephone or email only until further notice.
  • For our youth employment programs, Future Troopers, Future Leaders, Start it Right, please contact 604-547-1311 or youthjobs@dcrs.ca.
  • For the HEAL program, please contact 604-547-2275 or heal@dcrs.ca. For SAHARA, please contact 604-547-2275 or sahara@dcrs.ca.
  • All in-person workshops and in-person appointments are postponed until further notice.

Counselling Services

  • Our Child and Youth Empowerment Camp scheduled for March 23-27, has been cancelled.
  • All groups and in-person programs are postponed until further notice.
  • We are working toward providing one-on-one counselling via telephone. For more information, please contact counsellingservices@dcrs.ca.

Language Programs

  • Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) classes are on hold until further notice. Please contact languageprograms@dcrs.ca for more information.

Skills Training Centre

Language Testing Centre

  • DIVERSEcity is committed to protecting the health and safety of our test takers and test centre personnel so we are suspending all of our Surrey Newton and Surrey City Centre testing sites for CELPIP until at least April 16, 2020. For more information about test closures, see this message from Paragon Testing Enterprises.

DIVERSEcity Interpretation and Translation Services

  • DIVERSEcity Interpretation and Translation Services will continue by phone or email only. Learn more about our services at dcrs.ca/ITS.
  • Walk-in services for clients are suspended. To schedule any translation services pick-ups, please email interpretation@dcrs.ca or contact 604-597-1358.

 

More details on the impact on specific programs and services will be posted here as information becomes available. Staff will be reaching out to impacted clients where possible. Your patience and understanding is appreciated. 

For general inquiries and information, please call our main line 604-597-0205 between 10 am and 2 pm, Monday to Friday.