Pathways to Prosperity 2022 National Conference – Presentations and Recordings

Next Gen Canada: Immigration and Diversity as Pathways to Prosperity

November 14-15, 2022
Westin Hotel, Ottawa, with a Remote Option

Monday, November 14, 2022


9:30 AM – 10:45 AM EST

Welcome and Opening; The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (Video)

Conference Chairs: Victoria Esses and Katie Crocker, Pathways to Prosperity Co-Chairs

  • Welcome and Opening Remarks
  • Presentation by Nadine and Scott McKenzie, Naawakwe Singers
  • Presentation and Q&A with The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
  • Honouring Jean McRae, Former Co-chair of the Pathways to Prosperity Partnership


10:45 AM – 12:15 PM EST

Learning from Our Senior Leaders in Immigration and Settlement (Video)

Chair: Victoria Esses, Co-Chair, Pathways to Prosperity Partnership and Professor, Western University

Senior leaders in immigration and settlement have so much experience and learning to impart to the next generation, yet there are often no formal opportunities to do so. This session will look to fill that gap as we engage in an arm-chair discussion in which senior leaders in the field will discuss what it was like in the sector when they started off, how we progressed to where we are now, lessons learned and advice for those who are continuing their work, and how they envision the future. Their knowledge of how things have changed and improved (and how they can still improve) is imperative to understanding and optimizing the future of our field.

  • Jean McRae, former Co-Chair, Pathways to Prosperity Partnership and Chief Executive Officer, Intercultural Association of Greater Victoria
  • Gerry Mills, former Executive Director of Immigrant Services Associations of Nova Scotia (ISANS)
  • Laurie Sawatzky, former Executive Director, Regional Connections Immigrant Services
  • Saint-Phard Désir, Executive Director, Economic and Social Council of Ottawa-Carleton
  • Deborah Tunis, former Director General, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
  • Fariborz Birjandian, Chief Executive Officer, Calgary Catholic Immigration Society

Sponsored by: YMCA of Greater Toronto – Pre-Arrival Canada Program


1:30 PM – 3:00 PM EST

Youth in Canada Envision the Future of Diversity, Belonging, Anti-discrimination and Anti-oppression (Video)

Chair: Katie Crocker, Co-Chair, Pathways to Prosperity Partnership and Chief Executive Officer, Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Service Agencies of BC (AMSSA)

Complementing the ‘Senior Leaders in Immigration and Settlement’ session, the next session will highlight the voices of youth in Canada today and how they envision the future. This arm-chair discussion will tap into youth from across the country as they open up about their expectations, hopes, and fears for Canada in terms of diversity, Canadian identity, and belonging. They will discuss whether they see true multiculturalism in Canada as a realistic goal and how we might get there, as well as what needs to be done in terms of work on anti-discrimination and anti-oppression in order to build an equitable and prosperous future for our country.

  • Salma Ihsan, ICA Victoria
  • Océane Yao, IRCC Youth Advisory Group
  • Ruth Altaye, Generation Chosen
  • Syeda Hasan, IRCC Youth Advisory Group
  • Ira Mamis, Canadian Council for Refugees Youth Network
  • Danna Cortes, Canadian Council for Refugees Youth Network
  • Holly LaForme, Public Health Agency of Canada and Indigenous Employee Network

Sponsored by: COPA National


06:00 PM – 08:00 PM EST

Poster Session and Reception

A reception for delegates attending the conference along with a poster session featuring recent work by members of Pathways of Prosperity. Hors d’oeuvres will be served.

Sponsored by: World Education Services


Concurrent Workshops (Video Recording and Powerpoint presentations from the workshops available here)


Tuesday, November 15, 2022


10:00 AM – 11:00 AM EST

Keynote Address: Welcoming Immigrants in an Era of Community Obliteration (Video)

Nora Loreto, Writer and Activist

Nora Loreto is a writer and activist based in Quebec City. She’s the author of three books: From Demonized to Organized, Building the New Union Movement (2013); Take Back the Fight, Organizing Feminism in the Digital Age (2020); and Spin Doctors: How Media and Politicians Misdiagnosed the COVID-19 Pandemic (2021). She writes regularly for magazines and news organizations about politics, the economy and questions of justice. She regularly teaches classes on media relations, social media, fighting the far right and campaign organizing. Together with Sandy Hudson, Nora co-hosts the popular political podcast Sandy and Nora Talk Politics.



11:00 AM – 12:30 PM EST

Progress and Next Steps in Working toward Welcoming Communities (Video)

Chair: Sarosh Rizvi, Executive Director, Alberta Association of Immigrant Serving Agencies (AAISA)

For over 20 years policy-makers, practitioners, and researchers have considered what makes a community welcoming to newcomers, how we can measure these characteristics, and what we can do to promote more welcoming communities across the country. This session will take a deep dive into progress in answering these questions and next steps that should be on our agenda at this time of ever-increasing immigration levels. This will include updated ideas about the characteristics of a welcoming community and how to measure them, what COVID-19 has taught us about welcoming communities, Francophone welcoming communities and how to promote them, and the level of welcome and reception provided by smaller communities.

  • Measuring and Promoting Welcoming Communities: Updated Characteristics and a New Set of Toolkits (Download Presentation)
    Leah Hamilton, Professor, Mount Royal University
  • Communities Post-Pandemic: Changing Immigration Landscape and Community Resilience
    David Cashaback, Director General, Settlement and Integration Policy, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
  • Outside the Metropolis: Attitudes toward Immigrants and Immigration in Smaller Canadian Communities (Download Presentation)
    Victoria Esses, Co-Chair, Pathways to Prosperity Partnership and Professor, Western University
  • The Target for French-speaking Immigration: Forecast and Measures to Reach It
    Hector Vera, Policy Director, Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne (FCFA)

Sponsored by: Calgary Catholic Immigration Society


03:30 PM – 05:00 PM EST

Intersectoral Collaboration to Improve Immigrant Outcomes (Video)

Chair: Iain Reeve, Associate Director, Immigration Research, Conference Board of Canada

One of the key learnings from the pandemic is that addressing the new and long-standing challenges we face in supporting immigration to Canada requires the efforts and cooperation of multiple sectors. In this plenary we will focus on how and whom we can interact with to both fill immigrants’ and refugees’ needs and support their full integration into Canadian society. Topics to be addressed will include intersectoral collaboration to support immigrant employment, housing, and mental health, intersectoral collaboration to respond to large scale humanitarian arrivals, and intersectoral collaboration to address other challenges in filling immigrant and refugee needs that those working in the area of immigration can not solve alone.

  • Opportunities for Success: The Role of Municipalities in Immigration Strategies and Intersectoral Collaboration to Improve Immigrant Employment: The Case of the City of Moncton (Download Presentation
    Angelique Reddy-Kalala, Immigration Strategy Officer, City of Moncton
  • Collaboration and Partnerships: Supporting the Mental Health Needs of Immigrant and Refugees (Download Presentation)
    Aamna Ashraf, Manager of Health Equity, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
  • Reaching a Better ROI: How Settlement Sector and Private Sector Collaboration Can Create Better Outcomes for Newcomers (Download Presentation)
    Jennifer Freeman, Chief Executive Officer, PeaceGeeks
  • Responding to the Ukraine Crisis : Do We Have Everyone Around the Table? (Download Presentation)
    Jeremy Smith, Director of Strategic Policy for the Immigration and Population Growth Branch of Nova Scotia’s Department of Labour, Skills and Immigration

Sponsored by: The College of Immigration and Citizenship Consultants


05:00 PM – 05:15 PM EST

Closing Remarks

Conference Chairs: Katie Crocker and Victoria Esses, Pathways to Prosperity Co-Chairs

  • Katie Crocker, Pathways to Prosperity Partnership and Affiliation of Multicultural Societies and Service Agencies of BC (AMSSA)
  • Victoria Esses, Pathways to Prosperity Partnership