EthniCity Success Stories

Over the past year, EthniCity Catering provided more than 9, 920 hours of paid employment to immigrant and refugee men and women looking for their first job in Calgary. These hours were spent working in the kitchen, learning food safety skills, practicing English with co-workers and supervisors, and becoming familiar with the Canadian work environment and expectations of Canadian employers.

Throughout the year, 64 participants worked in the EthniCity Catering kitchen. They came to Canada from all over the world: India, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, China, Russia, Albania, Algeria, Somalia, Nigeria, Lebanon, Iraq, Palestine, Egypt, Syria, Philippines, and Peru.

Success varies for each person:

  • One employee learned to take the bus for the first time in order to come to her first day of work.
  • Another employee opened her very first bank account, to deposit the first pay cheque she had ever received.

Through this program, employees learn in a warm and supportive team environment in the kitchen. They connect with colleagues by sharing their struggles and successes settling in Canada. The program also connects them with our community through visits to Calgary recreation facilities together with their families, including the Calgary Zoo and Canada Day celebrations as well as learn about Community Resource Centres, medical centres and support for family violence.

Employees regularly leave EthniCity Catering to move on to other employment and learning opportunities. Some of this year's employees accepted full-time and part-time employment positions in daycare centres, restaurants, and office environments. Others enrolled in English classes to brighten their future job opportunities.

At EthniCity Catering, we are proud of the successes achieved by our employees and the hurdles they overcome as they adjust to life in Calgary. We are also thankful to our customers, for every order creates an opportunity to bring our employees into the kitchen to work, share, and learn.