Since I made the trek north side I have been asked by many people not only from Jamaica but other countries about the processes I went through and what they need to go as far as coming to Canada and trying to get permanent residence. Now this sentence is my disclaimer because I am no expert and all that I will put in this blog is what I’ve found out since I’ve been here. Some can be considered hearsay while others fact. The laws here change often so the best source is the Canadian Immigration site, http://www.cic.gc.ca/ … This will be an ongoing blog which I will update as much as I can with questions asked and random tips or facts that may come to me that may make the transition to Canada easier. I’ll be taking questions from the comments, Twitter and Facebook and adding them to this blog. The questions will be added randomly so they will not be in any order other than chronological. Let the questions begin….
Q: Why did you decide to move to Canada?
A. After trying unsuccessfully to follow through with my plans in Jamaica because of theft of property, extortion, bureaucratic red tape, just to name a few, I decided to try overseas. The decision to leave was hard but was made a bit easier one of my best friends almost died defending a business interest of mine. To cut a long story short, I shortlisted Japan, The United States of America and Canada and after Northern Caribbean University (NCU) failed to deliver my transcript to me on time to be a part of the Japanese English Teacher (JET) Programme, I decided to go with Canada and further my education.
Q. What is the best time to come to Canada?
A. I’m Jamaican and being in a country that was four seasons I’ve learnt to appreciate the sun’s warmth. If you are coming for vacation and you have never experienced snow, then try coming around the end or beginning of the year. If you don’t care for snow then come in the Spring or Summer.
Q. What school did I attend?
A. I attended Centennial College. It was the school that what was recommended when I did a consultation with a Education Lawyer before coming to Canada. I was accepted for a 18 month Project Management.
Q. Where do I live?
A. I currently live in Hamilton, Ontario. While I was in school I lived in Scarborough.
Q. How do you get school and work permits?
A. If you want to enter Canada as a student you have to g through the process of getting qualified. All information on this process will be provided after being accepted to the school of your choice. If you want the information beforehand the CIC website mentioned above will help. For work permits, the school will help you acquire this during the period of your study. Depending on how long you’re studying for the process will be different. For shorter than two year study you will get a work permit when you’re finished studying that will be the equivalent of your time at school. If you study for more than two you may be granted the permit on entering the country and it may be a little longer than the time of study.
Q. Where is the best place to come and settle in Canada?
A. There is no hard and fast answer to this question as every province has its pros and cons but the short answer is Saskatchewan. The province has jobs and tax breaks and will actually accept you in many jobs without Canadian education or experience.
Visit saskjobs.ca for jobs and more info.
Q. Is it true that there are provinces where a friend can file for a friend?
A. I’ve only recently heard of this but yes, it’s true. I don’t have much details but that seems to be the case in some areas of Alberta.
Q. What’s minimum wage in Canada?
A. Effective June 1, 2014, the minimum wage will be $11.
Q. What is the biggest benefit you have seen while being in Canada for its residents?
A. I’ll give you three. One is free health care and two, everybody is entitled to educational loans. The third is the mix of cultures is an interesting one and reminds me of Jamaica but even more so. With restaurants and hangouts everywhere you can explore culture from across the world all in one country.
Q. Can I have two jobs?
A. You can have as many jobs as you want but you have to make sure that you have the right work permit.
Q. Can I pay my bills outside of the country while I’m there in Canada?
A. Yes, but there will be fees involved for processing as well as other minimal fees. Usually using banks that can be found in your country make the process a little easier.
Q. Would I have to stay with someone?
A. No. You’re responsible to find somewhere to stay. I used rental sites (Kijiji among others) and found a place where I spent my college time. Staying with a family usually works out a lot cheaper.
NOTE : ALL QUESTIONS MAY BE EDITED TO PROVIDE THE BEST POSSIBLE ANSWERS. FOR THIS REASON CHECK BACK EVERY NOW AND THEN FOR UPDATES AS WELL AS NEW QUESTIONS ASKED THROUGH SOCIAL MEDIA.