Volunteering part of “Canadian experience”

publication date: Nov 10, 2011
New to the country, new to Canadian norms and language?  Try volunteering.  For immigrants trying to acclimatize to a new country and a new working culture, volunteering can provide a bridge to becoming part of Canadian culture.

Take the example of "Anita," a marketing professional from India who was repeatedly turned down because of a lack of "Canadian experience."  After volunteering at the YMCA, Anita improved her Canadian English, interacted daily with men and women outside her cultural group and absorbed new ideas and perspectives.  When a job opportunity presented itself, Anita was well prepared. No one has asked her about her "Canadian experience" again.

According to a survey conducted by LinkedIn, 46% of Canadians polled view volunteer work as valuable as paid work experience. For many new Canadians, volunteering is the first step to a bright future.

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