Friday, January 8, 2016

Helpful Links for Refugee Support

This is a list of helpful links people have found. Thanks to everyone for thinking of so many ways to help the people we are sponsoring.

If you telephone the 8-1-1 HealthLinkBC phone line, translators for over 100 languages are available. So if the family/Ali call 8-1-1, they can just say "Arabic" or "Swahili" and a translator comes over the line and helps them communicate back and forth with a nurse, nutritionist, etc.     Sent by Peggy Trendell-Jensen

Syrian refugee banking package, available through CIBC
    Sent by Kathleen Biebrich

Online map of Vancouver that has the locations of Arabic speaking doctors, mosques, and immigration services. Here's the link: 
   Sent by Cera Cruise

Permanent Resident (PR) cards and obtaining Health coverage

We would like to inform you that the new Permanent Residence Card no longer has an immigration category on it (i.e. CR1, CR3, etc.) and therefore, applicants cannot use this document when applying for provincial health care coverage. This causes issues for those refugees who request provincial health care coverage within 3 months of arriving in Canada and after obtaining their PR card.

There is normally a 3-month wait time for new PRs to obtain health care coverage, however refugees are exempt from this provided they have an accepted refugee code on the COPR.

The information that needs to be disseminated to sponsors is that no matter what, refugees need to use their COPR document as proof of status in order to receive provincial health care coverage whether they have obtained their PR card yet or not. Also, sponsors and refugees should be aware that to apply for a PR card, they only need to send a photocopy of their COPR to CIC and should keep the original.


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