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Essentials to Integration Initiative (Windsor & Essex)

What is Essentials to Integration?

This initiative consists of three distinct program models that bring together newcomers and Canadians to facilitate learning opportunities and help address common issues. Each program model focus’ on one of four components (individuals, families, communities [as identified by geography, language, nationality, age etc.] and community stakeholders) that each promotes the successful integration of newcomers while playing a role in building a healthy and vibrant Windsor-Essex community. Essentials to Integration is funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

Integration Experiences

Along with partners and stakeholders, these sessions facilitate opportunities and experiences for newcomers outside of the classroom allowing them to see, explore and engage with the people, places and resources in their new community. Whether it’s banking, healthcare or housing services, a cultural walking tour or trip to a farmers’ market, each integration experience introduces newcomers to needed and valuable information.

Community Support Dialogues

Facilitated conversations bring together families, communities and local organizations to discuss common needs, challenges and experiences. Each conversation addresses a specific topic and is organized in partnership with relevant service providers and community stakeholders to create mutual learning opportunities.

Community Building Experiences

Informal partnerships with local not-for-profits that provide newcomers with volunteer placements with a built in mentorship component. These opportunities will match a mentor with a newcomer in their volunteer placement to further increase their understanding of civic engagement (a unique part of Canadian society) and provide richer social, cultural and linguist learning opportunities. Not-for-profits will gain the support of ‘Essentials to Integration and Healthy Communities’ staff to better understand the unique needs and challenges of newcomers and may provide them with new perspectives, knowledge and best practices in working with newcomers.


YMCA OF Windsor and Essex County
500 Victoria Ave, Windsor (view map)
Phone: 519 258 9622
Monday to Friday 9:00am – 8pm
Saturday 9:00am – 5:00pm

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