COVID-19: Update from Jean McRae, CEO

Our teams at ICA have been working to adapt programs for online and over the phone delivery.

Dear Friend of ICA,
As I write this message to you, we are beginning to see the benefits of the adjustments we have all made to maintain safe physical distances and limit our interactions with others by staying home as much as possible. I know this is a difficult time for everyone and I'm grateful for the commitment you have all made in helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
Since my last update, our teams at ICA have been working to adapt programs for online and over the phone delivery in an effort to keep our communities connected, students progressing with their English classes and our clients supported with the critical services they need.
Our Youth and Family Services team responded quickly to keep youth connected and established the Culture Catch-up every Tuesday and Thursday, a regular check-in for youth 15-25 using the Zoom platform and in April they added the Landing Spot for youth 6+ as well as regularly scheduled virtual drop-in programs for all ages.
LINC English classes are now delivered online and after just two weeks the teachers and students are adjusting well to this new way of working and class attendance has been strong and is growing despite the barriers many have of access to computers and abilities to work comfortably in a digital environment. We are working with funders to help reduce these barriers by finding ways to supply computers and offer training to those who need additional support to use the technology effectively.
I encourage you to visit our COVID-19 Updates page of the website frequently for information on our programs and service delivery, as well as read our Blog posts and follow our social media platforms like Facebook, where you can learn more about everything we, and our partners, are doing as we continue to add more virtual programs like the Game Changer, Youth Employment Program that starts back up in June or the WORC for Women program that will begin virtual delivery in late May.
These are challenging times. I want to personally thank everyone who is supporting our work at ICA. I know that by working together we will find new ways to thrive as we continue to build a vibrant, diverse, inclusive and welcoming community here in the Capital Region.
We have a ways to go before restrictions and social distancing protocols will start to ease, but we know that these measures are working, so please stay safe and thank you for all you are doing to help make our great community a healthier place for everyone.
Jean McRae, CEO
Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria
PS - Find our COVID-19 Services and Program updates online here!

Bringing People Together Through Technology!

Responding to
COVID-19, ICA's English Language Classes Go On-Line!

We are very proud of ICA's English language teachers and students who had to shift gears very quickly in response to COVID-19.  It wasn't easy to go from in-person classes to learning through online platforms, but both teachers and students have adapted to this new reality and many are progressing well with their language skills. More than 70% (340) of ICA's students are now participating in class online, a remarkable achievement in a very short time!
For Jennifer Taylor, one of ICA's teachers, this has been a challenging time but also one that has opened up new opportunities for her and her students. "I feel grateful that ICA can offer a sense of continuity for students", said Jennifer. "Having a consistent program is fantastic, especially during a time when students are disconnected from friends and their normal routines." 
Some students are finding it challenging to focus on classes when there is so much other activity in the house. Others have had to improve their computer skills. All in all, even with the difficulties, students are enjoying classes, learning and staying connected to their friends and classmates which is especially important during this time when we have to be physically distanced from each other.
As one student said, "there's a big difference to my previous life. Now I just stay home. Fortunately, ICA has a way to provide online class and I have time to practice my English."

Continue reading on our Blog, to learn more about how our LINC English classes are keeping students learning.

Our Youth + Family Services team came out of the gate quickly in March with great new, online programs to keep youth engaged, connected and supported.
Read more about our Youth + Family Services on the Blog.
BC Provincial COVID-19 Resources
Trusted Links To Key COVID-19 Resources from the Province of BC

Employment Resources 
Did you know?

ICA is a Work BC Employment Services Centre? We have a full suite of services for all your employment needs, including a variety of workshops and programs.




"Show Your Heart"
Our community, in support of front-line workers during COVID-19

  Photo by Steven Baileys
  ICA Community Development Coordinator