CitySpaces is pleased to receive the Canadian Institute of Planners Award for Excellence in Social Planning for the Surrey is Home: Immigrant Integration Research Project. The Immigrant Integration Project used innovative engagement methods to explore the barriers to integrating newcomers, as well as the attributes that make Surrey a welcoming community.
CitySpaces and sub-consultants Kari Huhtala + Associates and The Mustel Group were commissioned by the City of Surrey and the Surrey Local Immigration Partnership to undertake rigorous mixed-methodology research that included a literature review, a telephone survey, focus groups, community consultation events, and a youth engagement team. Based around principles of inclusivity, respect, and sustainability, the research assessed public perceptions about Surrey as a welcoming community and newcomers’ experiences with integration. The project resulted in a final report that highlighted emerging themes, challenges, and successes in integrating refugees and immigrants into the community. The report took into account the increasing number of international immigrants in the national context and was designed to be applicable to communities across Canada. Findings from the research were used to inform the City of Surrey’s Immigrant and Refugee Settlement Strategies.
CitySpaces’ Community Planner and Project Manager Noha Sedky was part of the project team and accepted the award at the Building Resilience National Planning Conference 2017. The CIP Awards Committee’s decision was based on the innovation, sustainability, implementation potential, report presentation, and overall contribution to the Canadian planning landscape.