PEI Association for Newcomers to Canada (PEIANC) is delivering a new program designed to assist newcomers to Canada with the financial costs associated with having their international education and credentials recognized.
The Atlantic Immigrant Career Loan Fund (AICLF) is a microloan fund for internationally trained individuals. “Its purpose is to assist eligible newcomers in overcoming financial barriers to enter the workforce and be licensed in their occupations or other related fields,” says John Warr, Program Coordinator.
The fund provides assistance to help internationally trained individuals enter the workforce and potentially fill some of the gaps which exist in our labour market. Many shortages exist in the healthcare field, for example, but they exist in other fields as well.
John explained that although many clients come from the healthcare field, this fund is available to assist individuals from a broad range of professions in addition to the trades.
“We are able to assist individuals who wish to work in all sorts of professions and occupations. The fund is available to newcomers with various skills sets needed on PEI who may not qualify for other types of assistance.”
The AICLF launched across Atlantic Canada this past April after a successful two-year pilot project at the Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia.
Main Eligibility Requirements
- Permanent Resident or Canadian citizen
- resident of PEI
- have English/French skills required for program/profession
The program is scheduled to run until the Spring of 2026. PEIANC anticipates assisting a minimum of 20 to 30 newcomers annually with this fund.
“We can assist individuals with the cost of additional education, acquiring equipment, or other costs related to returning to work in their chosen field,” John says.
“For example, if an engineer wishes to acquire project management accreditation, we may be able to help with the costs associated with obtaining that credential if it will improve their prospects for employment.
“We may also be able to help those who need to supply their own equipment on a worksite.”
John often speaks with industry associations, post-secondary education representatives, and other partners.
“By informing them of the fund, the hope is that they can refer newcomers to us.
“Pathways to licensure in some professions can cost many thousands of dollars. If newcomers don’t qualify for student loans or other types of assistance, these costs can be prohibitive. The AICLF is an option for individuals who need assistance to achieve their career and employment goals.
“Studies show that cultural diversity is healthy for our society. Encouraging and supporting newcomers to settle in our province and the region is also vitally important to helping sustain and grow our economy.
“We believe this program can contribute to the broader strategy to attract and retain newcomers to PEI and to the Atlantic region.”
For more information about the Atlantic Immigrant Career Loan Fund (AICLF), cell 902-213-9968. Visit www.peianc.com/en/atlantic-immigrant-career-loan-fund or www.aiclf.ca.
For more information about the PEI Association of Newcomers to Canada, call 902-628-6009. Visit www.peianc.com.
Funded by the Government of Canada’s Foreign Credential Recognition Program.