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WHAT IS WELCOMING?

A welcoming community can be seen as "a collective effort to create a place where individuals feel valued and included"(Bennett-AbuAyyash et al., 2010). Welcoming communities and organizations "identify and remove barriers, promote a sense of belonging, and offer services that promote successful integration" in order to attract and retain newcomers (Bennett-AbuAyyash et al., 2010).

 

BENEFITS OF WELCOMING

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INDIVIDUAL LEVEL

Welcoming results in a variety of benefits for newcomers. Welcoming increases trust, inclusion, belonging and the feeling of being valued by a community or organization. Further, integration is more successful when barriers are reduced/eliminated and needs are met (Bennett-AbuAyyash, 2010).

Black and Brown Employee Newsletter (1).

ORGANIZATIONAL LEVEL

Welcoming techniques are one way for organizations to attract and retain newcomers in order to fill gaps and tap into a new, skilled labour force (Bennett-AbuAyyash, 2010).
Understanding the factors that support and impair welcoming also enable employers to build cultural competence, reduce bias and discrimination and encourage welcoming of newcomers - something that is key to economic development and sustainability.

 

How Can We Do This?

Some ways to do this include offering:

  • Employment services

  • Language classes

  • Support groups

  • Wellness programs

  • Community outreach programs

(Bennett-AbuAyyas et al., 2011; Guo & Guo, 2016).

 

Still, very little is known on how to increase the perception of community welcoming for new immigrants, especially for those relocating in small, isolated communities.

 
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