The first chartered flight carrying 250 Afghan nationals landed at Toronto Pearson International Airport on Thursday, December 2, 2021.
The latest arrivals are part of Canada’s humanitarian commitment to welcome vulnerable Afghan refugees—including women leaders, human rights defenders, persecuted minorities, LGBTI individuals and journalists, the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) said in a statement.
The statement further added that the humanitarian program complements Canada’s special immigration program for Afghans who worked for Canada during and after our military mission. Overall, Canada has welcomed almost 4,000 Afghan refugees.
Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, said “For those newly arrived in our big, cold country, private sponsors offer a warm welcome. It’s no wonder that many refugees think of their sponsors as family. As we welcome Afghan refugees, private sponsors are essential in helping vulnerable newcomers thrive in their new communities. I look forward to welcoming many more new arrivals in the weeks and months to come.”
One of the pillars of Canada’s world-leading refugee system, the Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program allows Canadians to play an integral role in welcoming refugees by sponsoring them.
Sponsors are crucial in setting a refugee up for success in this country. They can be groups of Canadians or organizations, including faith groups, ethno-cultural associations or settlement organizations, according to IRCC.
Refugees prosper and join Canada’s middle class within 5 years of their arrival, According to a UNHCR report from 2019.
One in four earned between $40,000 and $79,999 annually, similar to what average Canadians earn. Half of refugees working are employed in high-skilled jobs, and 14.4% are self-employed or business owners.