Refugee and Immigrant Supports to Employment (RAISE)

Refugee and Immigrant Supports to Employment (RAISE)2021-02-24T14:59:06-05:00

The RAISE program supports refugee and immigrant clients, with limited official language proficiency and work experience, interested to obtain and maintain employment in the trades, hospitality, sales and service, childcare, health services support and manufacturing sectors.

Through pre- and post-employment counselling and the support of Workplace Language Trainers, clients enhance their knowledge and skills for employment readiness, as well as develop their language skills specific to their workplace, thereby increasing their knowledge of the Canadian workplace culture, while participating in society.

In partnership with the province, the program incorporates a training subsidy as an incentive for employers, (“EmployMENTORS”) to develop individual learning plans for the client.

For more information on joining the RAISE program as a client or employer of choice, please contact:

Hiba Fazlullah
Refugee and Immigrant Supports to Employment (RAISE) Project Facilitator
[email protected]
Tel: (613) 725-5671, ext. 227

Client Benefits

Eligibility Requirements

  • Landed immigrant or convention refugee.
  • Experience or interest in the trades, hospitality, sales and service, childcare, health services support, and manufacturing sectors.
  • Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level between 3 and 6.
  • Ontario resident.

Make an Impact by Becoming an EmployMENTOR

Join our growing group of Ottawa employers engaged to support newcomers with employment and skills development opportunities.

Employer Benefits

  • Introduction to clients with valuable skills required for the Ottawa Labour Market.
  • Training subsidies in partnership with the province.
  • Pre-induction training supports for the prospective employee, tailored to the company’s human resource policies.
  • Post-employment support from the program’s staff to ensure employment maintenance.
  • Workplace language training by dedicated Volunteer Language Trainers.

Become a Volunteer Workplace Language Trainer

Volunteering Description

  • Provide a weekly three-hour workplace specific language training to our clients.
  • Time commitment: 12 meetings over three months.
  • Required training: initial orientation followed by monthly training.


  • Understand Canadian workplace culture and best practices.
  • Demonstrated Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) /Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) experience or relevant education experience.
  • Experience in working with people from diverse cultural backgrounds.

Benefits for Volunteers

As a Volunteer Workplace Language Trainer, you will:

  • contribute positively to the life of a newcomer to Canada;
  • enhance your cross-cultural competencies;
  • receive training focused on supporting refugees and newcomers;
  • build your experience in supporting immigrants and enhance your resume;
  • receive a reference from OCISO after a three-month Volunteer commitment; and
  • receive a certificate of appreciation after the commitment period.

Application Process

  • Complete the online application form for Volunteer Workplace Language Trainers found under Community Economic Development:
  • Provide us your Police Record Check-Level 2-Criminal Record and Judicial Matters Check (CRJM) or a valid security clearance obtained in the last three months. If you do not have either of them, we will support you in the process of getting your Vulnerable Sector Check from the police office.
  • Attend a mandatory orientation session.


For more information, please contact:

Alexis Dominguez
Workplace Language Training Facilitator (RAISE)
[email protected]
613-725-5671 ext. 356.

Service Delivery Improvement Workplace Language Training (SDI WLT) Innovation Project

The SDI WLT Innovation project is an IRCC funded research collaboration between OCISO and an Applied Linguistics Research team at Carleton University, focused on the development of an innovative 10-module workplace language curriculum for the Canadian workplace.

Focused on refugee and immigrant clients with low official language skills, the program aims to help these clients increase workplace language competencies and adapt to the Canadian workplace, as they transition into Canadian society. Providing a client-centered approach contextualized for the Canadian workplace, the program responds to individual client needs in the critical stages of maintaining employment.

SDI WLT Innovation project’s structure

Audience: The Workplace Language Training is designed to enhance the workplace language competencies of RAISE clients successfully matched with employment through the RAISE program.

Program structure & Proposed mode of delivery: The program follows a blended learning approach whereby learners would access the self-learning modules through the Moodle app, followed by in-person (or online) sessions with a TESL-trained Volunteer Workplace Language Trainer (VWLT). The Workplace Language training will be delivered in 12 sessions over three months.

Tentative themes for WLT Modules:

For more information, please contact:

Hiba Fazlullah
Project Coordinator – SDI WLT Innovation project
[email protected]
(613) 725-5671, ext. 227

Become A Member Today !

Our Mission!

OCISO supports immigrants through the journey of making Canada their home by providing creative and responsive programs that are culturally and linguistically appropriate, by building community through mutual respect and partnerships, and by fostering healthy and inclusive spaces for open dialogue and healing.

What we do 🙂

We are community based non-profit organization that has been providing services in Ottawa since 1978. We are motivated by the stories of new immigrants, and we are there every stage of the journey. OCISO directly serves over 10,000 immigrants and refugees every year. Our work is augmented by the generous efforts of our enthusiastic, caring and talented staff, volunteers, both established and new Canadians.