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VSB welcomes hundreds of immigrants

Hundreds of immigrant students have been welcomed into Vancouver district schools ahead of the new academic year.

The annual Newcomer Orientation and Welcome to British Columbia (NOW BC) event had its largest ever turnout as more than 500 families registered for the information sessions at Sir Charles Tupper Secondary School.

NOW BC was hosted by Vancouver School Board's Settlement Workers in Schools (SWIS) and Engaged Immigrant Youth Program, with funding from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.

"The event is about providing information about our school system," said SWIS manager Jerry Wu. "It helps parents and students to set proper expectations of our schools and speak with community resources that help the families."

In addition to the community resource fair, there is a welcome from the district and workshops for the families in nine different languages. The students connect with volunteer mentors who offer advice and reduce their anxiety by helping them build a network of people they know.

The event receives positive feedback from the families and helps the students settle into their new schools.

"We hear from schools there are less problems and students are more comfortable," said Wu.

Among those volunteering to help the latest newcomers was student Dave Calivoso, who benefited from the event last year after moving to Canada from the Philippines.

"They gave me a lot of information that gave me a lot of confidence about how I was doing in Canada," he said.

Click on the image below to visit Flickr Album.NOW BC 2016

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