All group activities receive professional guidance by PRAIDA or YMCA staff members.
- A women's group: In a pleasant atmosphere of sharing and creativity, the group meets twice a week to engage in free discussion and do handicrafts, creating different objects, making a work of art, sewing, etc. The group also regularly operates a small booth to sell its creations.
- A stress-management group: This newly created group provides a meditation space for relieving the stresses the participants may experience. The animator teaches meditation methods, a peaceful experience, which participants can reproduce at home.
Témoignage : « Avant le cours, mon attention était toujours focalisée sur mes pensées, mes soucis et mes problèmes. Une fois que je suis connecté à mon MOI intérieur, je me sens en paix et cela me procure une sensation de bien-être. Les soucis sont là mais je peux exister sans eux. »
- A group for sharing and discussion: Intended for refugee claimants who wish to meet people living a similar experience and to overcome their feeling of isolation, the group fosters sharing and discussion in addition to providing the opportunity to build meaningful relationships with other refugee claimants. It is a support group in which the members learn from one another.
- Creative diary group: Creative writing, spontaneous drawing, texture collage; meetings to reduce stress and put aside concerns in a pleasurable setting!
- Groupe ESPOIR: This support and self-help group is intended for refugee claimants who have received a negative response after the asylum hearing. It enables people who are anxious and discouraged to connect with others who are living a similar experience and to find ways together to feel better and not lose heart.
- Job-search workshops: The workshops consist of 10 meetings that equip and prepare the refugee claimant to deal with the job market. Following the workshops, there are generally one-on-one meetings to give participants more personalized support.
Every week, information sessions are held to prepare refugee claimants to navigate the asylum process and successfully integrate into the host society. Stakeholders from partner organizations lead the workshops. Most participants regularly attend several times a week for periods of a few weeks to a few months.
- Social Assistance workshop: the social assistance process; your responsibilities in social assistance; what to do if you find a job (Partner involved: Centre spécialisé des demandeurs d'asile)
- Rights and freedoms in Québec: gender equality; sexual orientation in Québec: rights, respect, etc.; freedom of religion and freedom of expression (Partners involved: Commission des droits de la personne et de la jeunesse, et Arc-en-ciel d'Afrique)
- Workshop with the police: police work in Canada; your rights and responsibilities; what is legal and illegal (Partner involved: community police in the neighbourhood)
- Information about the hearing: how to prepare an immigration file; what happens at the hearing (Partner involved: Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees)
- Health: how to access health services; medical insurance (Partners involved: Gap-Vie, Montreal Children's Hospital)
- Housing: how to find housing; the contract between the landlord and you; your responsibilities in the apartment; what to do if you have problems with the landlord (Partners involved: Le POPIR, housing committee, et La Maisonnée)
- The immigration process, application for refugee status: how to prepare an immigration file effectively; finding out what the lawyer does; stages in the asylum process (Partner involved: Bureau de l'aide juridique en immigration)
- Your rights in the job market: your rights as a worker (Québec Laws); what to do if your rights are not respected; employment agencies (Partner involved: Immigrant Workers Centre)
- Immigration Detention Centre in Laval: understanding the circumstances in which you may be held; possible reasons and duration, etc.; learning more about the holding centre (operation, building, etc.); on-site services and support; group discussion about experiences and issues (Partner involved: Jenny Jeannes, Action réfugié Montréal)
- The Refugee Protection Division of the IRB: a visit to a hearing room and an overview of the hearing process; essential information about rights, obligations and responsibilities; information about the different deadlines.
This information session takes place several times a month in the offices of the IRB (Immigration and Refugee Board) located at 200 René-Lévesque Boulevard W, rooms 72-73 (see the events calendar for upcoming dates).
Advance registration is required. Registration can be done by phone or in person at the PRAIDA-YMCA Day Centre for refugee claimants.
(Partner involved: Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB))
- World Refugee Day (June 20)
- Christmas Party (December)
- International Women's Day (March 8)
- Open House Day (summer)