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Never Lose Hope, NEW Client Sara’s Advice to Newcomers

Over 17 million families have moved to Canada since 1867. Toronto alone houses 37.4% of all immigrants. Newcomer Women’s Services has been instrumental in providing settlement, language, skills training and employment services to thousands since 1983.

When Sara moved to Toronto, she had no clue of what the future held. With fierce determination to achieve her dreams, she visited Newcomer Women’s Services to seek consultation.

“I was nervous to step into your office the first day,” she recalls. In the same breath, she continues, “But you did make me feel at home.”

Sara’s family is among the first-generation of Canadians. Naturally, she did not have anyone to guide her during her initial days in Toronto. After residing in a rented basement for the first few months, she decided to take small steps towards exploring career opportunities in her new home.

Her search for jobs and settlement resources brought her to Newcomer Women’s Services, where she met our settlement counselor Natasa Boskovic. Sara recalls her meeting with Natasa to be extremely beneficial. “My counselor was very cooperative and helped me register for several workshops that benefitted me later,” she says.

After getting her qualifications assessed, Sara decided to improve her language skills by partaking in an English language program delivered by professional instructors at NEW. Not just that, she took advantage of all volunteering opportunities. She would attend workshops on weekdays, and complete her homework on weekends!

“All workshops and volunteering opportunities I took part in helped me grow as an individual. It helped me understand Canadian culture, values and work ethics,” she says.

After finding her feet in the city, Sara went on to take writing lessons at George Brown College before earning a certificate in Human Resource Management from Ryerson University, Toronto.

Cut to the present day, Sara is happily employed at the City of Toronto as a Human Resources professional and says it is fulfilling to look back and see how her life changed in a few years’ time.

Her advice to newcomers: Keep trying and never lose hope!

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