Government of Canada supports physical activity through active transportation for newcomers arriving in Canada – Philippine Canadian Inquirer

Today, Taleeb Noormohamed, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Granville, on behalf of the Honorable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Health, announced an investment of over $970,000 to fund a project that supports increased physical activity and healthy lifestyle for immigrant populations in three cities. (Picture File: Taleeb Noormohamed 🇨🇦 @Taleeb/Twitter)

Research shows that most immigrant adults who arrive in Canada tend to experience declining health after arrival. This decline is due to decreased levels of physical activity, poor diet, stress and social isolation. These in turn can make them more vulnerable to chronic disease.

Today, Taleeb Noormohamed, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Granville, on behalf of the Honorable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Health, announced an investment of over $970,000 to fund a project that supports increased physical activity and healthy lifestyle for immigrant populations in three cities. The project will implement innovative and integrated approaches to promote healthy living and address common risk factors for chronic disease.

The Immigrant Services Society of British Columbia (ISSofBC) will use this funding for the Newcomer Bike Mentorship Program, which helps newcomers make cycling a regular mode of transportation during their settlement processes. The project will match immigrants and refugees with local cycling experts who will provide them with support, resources, activity ideas and organize group events.

Through this mentorship program, newcomers to Vancouver, Toronto and Halifax will have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with their city’s cycling routes, rules and culture while exercising regularly. In doing so, they will also discover the health and chronic disease prevention benefits of cycling as a regular form of exercise.

Quote

“Newcomers to Canada are an integral part of what makes our country so strong. Ensuring they maintain healthy behaviors after they arrive is also integral to their long-term health. Urban cycling is growing rapidly in many Canadian cities and is making cycling a safe, affordable and convenient mode of transportation and a great way to stay active. Through mentors, newcomers will get to know their new community better and develop healthy behaviors that will help reduce their risk of developing chronic disease.

The Honorable Jean-Yves Duclos
health Minister

“Each year, thousands of immigrants choose to make Canada their forever home. This program will help newcomers stay active when they settle in Canada, while incorporating regular exercise into their routines and learning the lifelong health benefits of cycling.

Taleeb Noormohamed
Member of Parliament for Vancouver Granville, British Columbia

“ISSofBC is grateful to have the opportunity to lead the multi-year National Cycling Welcome Program for Newcomers, a unique program that brings together immigrant-serving agencies and local cycling communities/volunteers in Halifax, Toronto and Vancouver with newcomers to Canada to learn and explore through their settlement process cycling, cycling education, health promotion and healthy living.

jonathan oldman
CEO, Immigrant Services Society of British Columbia

Fast facts

  • The funding announced today is being distributed through the Public Health Agency of Canada’s Multi-Sector Partnerships (MSP) program, which has invested $20 million per year since 2013 in innovative projects across the country that aim to reduce the risk of chronic disease among Canadians by addressing the risk factors of unhealthy diet, smoking and physical inactivity. MSP is now known as the Healthy Canadians and Communities Fund.
  • The mission of the Immigrant Services Society of British Columbia is to help immigrants build a future in Canada by providing education, settlement and employment services, developing partnerships with local communities and promoting an integrated and equitable community.
  • Active transportation can be defined as using your own energy to move from one place to another. This can include walking, biking, running, and snowshoeing.

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