How you can help refugees coming to British Columbia

Syria’s civil war is one of the worst humanitarian disasters of our time. More than half the population of Syria are either refugees or internally displaced.

The federal government is working to bring 25,000 Syrian refugees in Canada by the end of February. British Columbia will be the destination for a number of adults and children, of all ages and abilities, who will need help integrating into Canadian society and starting their new lives. But, the real settlement work will be done by communities pulling together to offer supports to these refugees once they arrive.

We feel it’s important for us all to come together to provide the support that is urgently needed for the many refugees who are in crisis. Vancity has been built on principles of social justice and financial inclusion, and providing assistance to the newest members of our community is reflective of our values-based banking model.

Vancity has a number of initiatives underway to support those in need once they arrive in B.C., from opening bank accounts and providing basic financial literacy, to working with refugee assistance groups like Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISSofBC). But we need your help.

How members and the public can help:

  • Contribute to the Vancity Humanitarian Fund. The Vancity Humanitarian Fund was created in response to the Syrian crisis; Vancity will match donations of up to $125,000 from members and employees.
  • Offer Housing. Do you have space for rent? Consider making this available for rent to a refugee individual or family. You can list yourself as a housing provider with ISSofBC.
  • Offer jobs. Are you an employer? Both highly skilled and entry level jobs are needed to help the Syrian refugees settle in Canada.
  • Share your knowledge. Many myths about refugees prevail. By learning more, you can help challenge misconceptions.

To learn more call 1-844-447-9742 (toll-free), email visit ISSofBC.


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