RDÉE Prince Edward Island, the provincial Francophone economic development council, has just hired Sylvain Duguay of Charlottetown to take on the coordination of the project. He replaces Catherine Rioux, who occupied the position for three years.
In close collaboration with RDÉE immigration development officer Robert Maddix, Duguay will oversee the operation of several initiatives aimed at integrating immigrants into the local workforce and into entrepreneurship. Among these initiatives are the LIENS Work Experience Program (internships), the Entrepreneurial Coaching Program, immigrant client training and the promotion of governmental immigration programs (Working Holiday Visa, Express Entry and Pre-Departure).
The new coordinator will also help promote the idea of hiring immigrants to Island employers, either through direct meetings or through workshops or lunch-and-learns on pertinent topics.
He’ll also collaborate with a number of key partners that are linked to the immigration sector, including the Coopérative d’intégration francophone de l’Î.-P.-É. and the PEI Association of Newcomers to Canada. In addition, he’ll support initiatives of the National Francophone Immigration Week.
Maddix and Duguay are also the resource people for a small Employability and Entrepreneurship Resource Centre for French-Speaking Immigrants, set up temporarily in the RDÉE’s offices at the Carrefour de l’Isle-Saint-Jean in Charlottetown. Immigrants can access the centre’s office spaces, computers, conference room and small resource library. A move to a downtown Charlottetown location is anticipated for the fall.
“I’m really looking forward to jumping right into these various initiatives to do everything I can to help integrate Francophone newcomers into our Island workforce or to help them set up a new business,” says the new employee.
Duguay graduated from the University of Moncton with a degree in pure science (major in biology and minor in accounting). He spent the past two summers working on a research project with Fisheries and Oceans Canada. He has also worked with the Francophone early childhood centre l’Île enchantée in Charlottetown. He is a former athlete and coach with the Jeux de l’Acadie and the Jeux de la francophonie canadienne; more recently, he coached a rugby team at Queen Charlotte Intermediate School.
The LIENS project recently revamped its bilingual website to make it more attractive and modern as well as to facilitate its navigation. Some of its content was also updated; new information is continually being added. The site now contains a new section on various employment programs and employer support programs. The new site can be seen at www.liensipe.ca.
LIENS was recently named “an inspiring international best practice” by the European Commission. This project is funded jointly through the federal Department of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada and the Province via its Office of Immigration, Settlement and Population of PEI.
CUTLINE: New LIENS project coordinator Sylvain Duguay shows the project’s new web site at www.liensipe.ca.
For more information:
Immigration Development Officer
(902) 370-7333, Ext. 403
Raymond J. Arsenault
(902) 854-3439, Ext. 231