2019 federal Conservative candidate April Jeffs joins Conservative MP Larry Maguire and Janet Madume, Executive Director of the Welland Heritage Council and Multicultural Centre
Conservative MP Larry Maguire (Manitoba) who is a member of the federal Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, spent yesterday afternoon touring the Welland Heritage Council and Multicultural Centre. The tour was arranged by April Jeffs who will be running as a Conservative in the upcoming 2019 federal election. Jeffs is a Board member with the Welland Heritage Council.
As a relatively new Board member, Jeffs was so impressed with the work being done at the Centre that she asked Maguire to come for a tour so he could see first-hand the programs and services being offered and the positive impact they are making. “We did a lot of talking and a lot of walking on the tour and Larry did a lot of listening and asking questions,” said Jeffs. Also on the tour was the Centre’s Executive Director, Janet Madume. Jeffs first met Madume during her time as Mayor of Wainfleet. “A few years ago there were a couple churches in Wainfleet that were sponsoring some of the Syrian refugees that came to Canada,” said Jeffs. “My involvement with that initiative allowed me to meet Janet and learn about the wonderful work her and her team is doing at the Centre.”
Maguire was able to observe one of the English as a Second Language classes while on the tour. The trio then went across the street to the Employment Solutions office which is affiliated with the Centre. Employment Solutions started in Welland nine years ago as Canadian Access for International Professions and Skilled Trades (C.A.I.P.S.). Staff has assisted many Newcomer Clients from around the world to gaining meaningful employment in Canada.
“I think it was good for Larry to get a chance to see what is being done here in Welland and Niagara and ask a lot of good questions. There was a lot of discussion on youth and how young people are impacted in a number of ways during the immigration process,” said Jeffs.
The Centre is seeing a lot of well educated and highly skilled immigrants coming through the system. Recently, a husband and wife, both of whom are physicians, have been going through the process.
The Welland Heritage Council and Multicultural Centre was founded in 1976 to assist the various ethnic groups in the City of Welland and surrounding areas of Port Colborne, Pelham, Wainfleet, and Fort Erie. A satellite office was later developed in Fort Erie. The Fort Erie Multicultural Centre Board of Directors was formed and eventually opened their own agency. As the number of immigrants that needed assistance grew, the Multicultural Network of Niagara Falls opened in 1995.
Some of the services provided by the Centre include: Newcomer Settlement Services; Social Integration Support Services; Niagara Foreign Credential Recognition Program; English as a Second Language; Emergency Shelter; Employment Solutions; Improving Prosperity for Niagara’s Women Business Owners; Youth Calendar and Professional Development.