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Fostering Civic Participation of Canadian Immigrants in Public Processes Jones, Allison 2008

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     University of British Columbia School of Community and Regional Planning Professional Project  The Maple Bamboo Initiative:  Fostering Civic Participation of Canadian Immigrants  in Public Processes   by Allison Rich Jones Submitted in partial fulfillment of the Masters of Arts in Planning Degree  April 10, 2008  ? Allison Rich Jones, 2008   i Table of Contents Table of Contents ...................................................................................................................................... i?List of Acronyms ...................................................................................................................................... iii?List of Boxes .............................................................................................................................................. iii?List of Figures ............................................................................................................................................ iii?List of Tables ............................................................................................................................................. iii?Acknowledgements ................................................................................................................................ v?Executive Summary ................................................................................................................................ vi?1? Introduction ...................................................................................................................................... 1?1.1? Background ..................................................................................................................... 1?1.2? Maple Bamboo Pilot Project ......................................................................................... 2?1.3? Research Site ................................................................................................................... 2?1.4? Project Goal and Objectives ........................................................................................ 2?1.5? Methods of Data Collection and Analysis .................................................................. 3?1.6? Organization of the Report ........................................................................................... 4?2? The Conceptual and Policy Context .............................................................................................. 5?2.1? Introduction ..................................................................................................................... 5?2.2? Defining terms .................................................................................................................. 5?2.3? Current Multicultural Policy in Canada ....................................................................... 8?3? Situating the Problem .................................................................................................................... 12?3.1? Introduction ................................................................................................................... 12?3.2? The Present-Day Reality ............................................................................................... 12?3.3? Lack of Immigrant Participation ................................................................................. 15?3.4? Good Practices: Public Engagement Techniques .................................................. 17?3.5? The Role of Targets in Achieving Representation .................................................... 21?4? The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s Possibilities and Prospects ........................................................ 23?4.1? Introduction ................................................................................................................... 23?4.2? The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s Objectives and Goals ........................................... 23?4.3? Case Study Description ................................................................................................ 24? ii 4.4? Maple Bamboo Advisory Council .............................................................................. 25?4.5? Maple Bamboo Participants ....................................................................................... 25?4.6? The Maple Bamboo Training ....................................................................................... 27?4.7? Maple Bamboo Pilot Project Participant Interview Findings .................................. 29?4.8? Summary of Participant Interview Findings ............................................................... 33?4.9? Maple Bamboo Pilot Project Host Agency Interview Findings ............................... 33?4.10? Summary of Host Agency Interview Findings ........................................................... 36?4.11? Maple Bamboo Progress Report ................................................................................ 37?5? Challenges to Project Viability: Beyond a Pilot Project .............................................................. 38?5.1? Program Strengths ........................................................................................................ 38?5.2? Challenges ..................................................................................................................... 38?5.3? Framework for the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s Future Development ................... 41?Conclusions ............................................................................................................................................ 43?Recommendations ................................................................................................................................ 44?Maple Bamboo Program Recommendations ....................................................................... 44?Metro Vancouver Municipal Recommendations ................................................................. 45?Federal Multicultural Policy Recommendations ................................................................... 45?Bibliography ........................................................................................................................................... 47?Appendix A: Interview Schedules ........................................................................................................ 52?Appendix B: Maple Bamboo Candidate Application ........................................................................ 54?Appendix C: Sample Questionnaire for Trainees ................................................................................ 57?Appendix D: Sample Questionnaire for Host Agencies ...................................................................... 62?Appendix E: Mentoring Toolkit Excerpts, abcGTA ............................................................................... 65?Appendix F: Maple Bamboo Training Agenda .................................................................................... 70?Appendix G: Map of Metro Vancouver ............................................................................................... 74?Appendix H: Ethics Approval Certificate ............................................................................................. 75?Appendix I: Consent Form/Confidentiality Agreement ...................................................................... 77?Appendix J: Contact Letters .................................................................................................................. 79? iii List of Acronyms abcGTA: Agencies, Boards & Commissions of the Greater Toronto Area MHHS: Multicultural Helping House Society MB: Maple Bamboo MBI: Maple Bamboo Initiative List of Boxes Box 1. Guiding Research Principles ................................................................................................ 3?Box 2. Lessons from abcGTA ......................................................................................................... 19?Box 3. Maple Bamboo Participant Interview Findings: ............................................................. 33?Box 4. Maple Bamboo Host Agency Interview Findings: .......................................................... 37?List of Figures Figure 1. Multicultural Helping House Society Location .............................................................. 1?Figure 2. Percent Immigrant Population in Core and Middle Municipalities in Metro Vancouver, 1996 & 2006 ............................................................................................................................. 14?Figure 3. Recent Immigrants' Birthplace, 1991-1996, 2001-2006 .............................................. 15?Figure 4. Maple Bamboo Logo ..................................................................................................... 24?Figure 5. Maple Bamboo Trainees' Education Level ................................................................. 26?Figure 6. Maple Bamboo Participants' Ages .............................................................................. 27?Figure 7. Gender and Ethnicity of MB Participants.................................................................... 27?Figure 8. Map of Metro Vancouver ............................................................................................. 74?List of Tables Table 1. Community Visions Process and Multicultural Outreach Methods .......................... 21?Table 2. Maple Bamboo Initiative Training Curriculum ............................................................. 28?  iv Abstract The Maple Bamboo Initiative is a pilot project initiated by the Multicultural Helping House in Vancouver, BC. In the spring, summer and fall of 2007, the two-part initiative focused on training new immigrants about Canadian public processes and increasing local host agencies? capacities to create volunteer opportunities for trainees in host organizations. Building Canadian immigrant capacity is central to increasing immigrants? representation on local boards, advisory councils, at public forums and in mainstream public processes. At the same time, mainstream organizations must increase their capacity to include active immigrant involvement in order to achieve a more diverse and representative organizational composition. This research report draws on Canadian federal, provincial and local multicultural policy to situate the Maple Bamboo Initiative as a study of active multiculturalism in which a locally based pilot project strengthens immigrant participation on civic issues important to them. The research investigates two case studies, abcGTA in Toronto and Community Visions in Vancouver, and applies lessons in good practice to the Maple Bamboo Initiative. Qualitative interview findings of participants? experiences of the pilot project form the basis of program and policy recommendations that conclude the report. Tools such as questionnaires to measure outcomes for sustainable program development are included in the report?s appendices for use by MHHS and other interested agencies.   v Acknowledgements I wish to extend my deepest gratitude to all of the generous and patient people who have helped me pursue this research on the Maple Bamboo Pilot Project. First, the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s staff has been endlessly supportive in terms of providing resources, suggestions, contacts and their limited time. In particular, I would like to thank Olga Scherbina, the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s former project coordinator for giving her opinions, valuable data and encouragement throughout my research. Eleanor Guerrero-Campbell, the Executive Director of the Multicultural Helping House, has been the engine behind the project. Her passion and commitment are humbling. The project?s implications for inclusivity in planning processes are inspiring.  I also extend sincere thanks to my supervisors, Dr. Wendy Sarkissian and Dr. Lenora Angeles. Both have seen me through doubts regarding this research and have guided me to believe that I am not only capable of providing valuable information, but that my contributions can have ongoing relevance after this project is complete.   I especially appreciate the energy and contributions of Maple Bamboo participants and host agency representatives who made time to be interviewed and to reflect on the long-term sustainability of the project. Their willingness to share their experiences and suggestions has been the backbone of this study and its recommendations. I very much enjoyed meeting each of them and hope that our paths cross again at some point in the future.  I would also like to recognize all of my colleagues at the School of Community and Regional Planning. Without them, I might have thought this challenge to be mine alone and would not have been able to commiserate about the conundrums and triumphs along the way. Special thanks go to Marylyn Chiang, Cathy Pasion and Ren Thomas for encouraging me through it all, in the midst of their own professional and academic pursuits.  Finally, a heartfelt thank you to my family: to my parents who have always given me unconditional love and support in all of my endeavours which, I realize more each day, is a fortunate gift that not everyone has, to my sister who completed her MA before I did and showed me that it was indeed possible, and of course, to my roommate, Aviva, who has been right there through all of the ups and downs and who knew I could do it even when I wanted to throw my hands up and move to the other side of the world.    April 10, 2008           Vancouver, BC  vi Executive Summary Canada has gained international recognition for its policies that promote and embrace multiculturalism. Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver continued to receive the vast majority of new immigrant settlement in Canada with more than two thirds (68.9%) of new immigrants settling in these three metropolitan areas between 2001 and 2006. A gap exists between federal and provincial multicultural policies and the practice of multicultural civic engagement in Canada. The Maple Bamboo Initiative is an attempt by a non-governmental multicultural organization to ameliorate this gap and overcome challenges in applying existing multicultural policies on the ground. Community-based, immigrant service organizations can facilitate immigrant inclusion in mainstream governmental and non-profit organizations as they have established connections with immigrant communities. These organizations are vital to building capacity for multicultural representation on boards, advisory councils, committees and in public consultations. The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s two-pronged approach prepares new immigrants for public participation and builds alliances with mainstream host agencies to foster inclusive, representative public processes in Metro Vancouver.  The report looks at two case examples of current practices in Canadian multicultural inclusivity in formal engagement processes. The abcGTA, a Maytree Foundation program in the City of Toronto, increases visible minority representation on agencies, boards and commissions in the Greater Toronto Area. Community Visions, a municipal initiative of the City of Vancouver, attempts to increase immigrant inclusion in community planning processes. Both offer insights into methods and institutional commitments that are required to ensure sustainable, reciprocal partnerships between mainstream organizations and new immigrant participants in civic life. Lessons from case studies are applied to a long-term program framework for the Maple Bamboo Initiative. Sixteen policy recommendations are offered based on a synthesis of the case studies, findings from Maple Bamboo participant and host agency interviews as well as from a Canadian multicultural policy review. The key recommendations targeted at municipal and higher-level governments that emerged from this research are: 1.  Allocate permanent, flexible funding through Canadian Heritage to support new immigrant civic engagement programs in communities across Canada. 2.  Pursue multiculturalism proactively throughout all levels of government and provide local governments the tools to make public, private and non-profit public processes as inclusive as possible. 3.  Support ongoing research on immigrant participation in municipal governments. Formal systems to quantitatively track new immigrant involvement across municipal governments provide useful data for research on multiculturalism in practice.  4.  Adopt written policies and set targets on multicultural inclusion and act on them.  5.  Liaise with immigrant service providers to build capacity and enthusiasm for multicultural representation in public processes.  6.  Review this report for lessons learned from the Maple Bamboo Initiative. Key recommendations focused on the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s long-term sustainability are: 7.  Formalize partnership agreements with existing host agencies. Formalized partnerships would include a written agreement clearly outlining expectations of each party.  8.  Hire at least two full-time staff members to promote and sustain the program. 9.  Adjust and extend program timing and timeline.   vii 10. Offer periodic training and refresher courses to expand and deepen participants? knowledge base. 11. Consider participant fees or other revenue-generating activities that can build self-sustaining financial resources. 12. Eliminate the use of web-based blogs and facilitate in-person support mechanisms amongst Maple Bamboo trainees. 13. Adopt quantitative benchmarks for outcome measurements.  14. Create subcommittee working groups of the Maple Bamboo advisory committee to develop action agendas.  15. Collaborate with other multicultural service agencies to develop civic engagement programs and training for new immigrants and host agencies in surrounding municipalities.  16. Explore cultural competency training for host agency sponsors. There are many subject areas relevant to multicultural inclusion and representation that could be further investigated. They include immigrants? experiences of discrimination and exclusion in formal public processes, alternative participatory methods for new immigrant inclusion in informal public processes, the unique challenges to participation for new immigrants in rural Canadian contexts and quantitative analysis that measures the efficacy of cultural competency training in increasing diversity in senior management positions, on public boards, advisory councils and on non-profit boards of directors. Significant changes to Metro Vancouver?s demographic composition in recent years raise questions of how municipal governments and mainstream agencies can respond to new immigrants? concerns and effectively reflect their viewpoints in decision-making processes. This report examines the implications of a multicultural project that seeks to empower new immigrants to actively engage in issues important to themselves and their communities. The Maple Bamboo Initiative is a case study with the potential to strengthen new immigrant civic participation on both individual and institutional levels across Canada.     11  Introduction 1.1  Background This study is about new immigrants? abilities and capacities to engage in public processes in Metro Vancouver. The research is grounded in a case study of a civic participation project initiated in 2006 that approaches public participation holistically. The Maple Bamboo Initiative engages in active multiculturalism that seeks to strengthen civic participation for all actors involved. The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s founders recognize the need and desire of new immigrants to engage in Canadian public processes. At the same time, mainstream organizations and public agencies that promote civic participation must also increase their capacity to achieve inclusive organizational composition. This study explores the case study?s strengths and investigates a number of challenges to its long-term sustainability. In light of dramatic demographic changes taking place in most Canadian metropolitan areas, it is timely to examine the implications of multiculturalism in practice in a rapidly changing urban context. Greater Vancouver?s population growth continues to be primarily fuelled by international immigration. In 2006, 39.6% of people living in Metro Vancouver were foreign born. The City of Vancouver?s immigrant population has reached 47%, whereas proportions in the neighbouring municipalities of Burnaby and Richmond are as high as 50.8% and 57.4% respectively (Statistics Canada, 2006). The number of immigrants settling in Metro Vancouver continues to rise, particularly in outlying areas because of the relative affordability of housing located there. Over the past two decades, Canadian lawmakers have taken an international lead in institutionalizing policy that promotes and embraces multiculturalism (Hiebert, 2003, Sandercock, 1998, 2003a, 2003b). However, a gap remains between multicultural policy provisions and the reality of how multiculturalism is lived on the ground (Wood and Gilbert, 2005). Actors who participate in Canadian public processes and in public and private organizations are not necessarily representative of a community?s diverse demographic composition. Immigrants are often underrepresented in mainstream organizations and public processes including advisory boards, boards of directors, public forums, community consultations and as speakers at city council meetings.  I select the Multicultural Helping House?s (MHHS) Maple Bamboo Initiative in Vancouver, BC, to probe questions of Canadian immigrant involvement in public processes and to explore how immigrant public engagement is perceived and facilitated in mainstream host agencies. Canadian immigrants who are participants in the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s training program are at the core of my research. Those host agencies that partner or are potential partners of the Multicultural Helping House through the Maple Bamboo Initiative are also central to this study.  The MHHS is currently located at the corner of Fraser Street and 32nd Avenue in the Kensington Cedar Cottage neighbourhood in the City of Vancouver (see Figure 1). The neighbourhood is diverse and in 2001 was comprised of 37.8% Chinese speakers, 5.5% Vietnamese speakers and 5.0% Tagalog (Filipino) speakers. About 32.8% of the community?s residents are native English speakers (Statistics Canada, 2001). The MHHS was founded in 1996 in response to a need for community support services for new Filipino immigrants. Two Filipino churches are around the corner from MHHS. Although MHHS began as an agency that primarily provided assistance to Filipino immigrants, the society has evolved with the changing needs of Vancouver?s immigrant populations and now Figure 1. Multicultural Helping House Society Location   MHHS 32nd Ave and Fraser St.    2aims to serve underrepresented immigrant groups in general. MHHS is very effective in assisting new immigrants with job skills training, employment advice and emergency housing as necessary.  1.2  Maple Bamboo Pilot Project In early 2007, the Maple Bamboo Initiative grew out of the MHHS? Executive Director?s commitment to training recent immigrants on how to participate effectively in Canadian public processes. Eleanor Guerrero-Campbell and Olga Scherbina have been the driving forces behind this initiative.  They sought to train 60 new immigrants from seven emerging immigrant communities on public process involvement. They also intended to recruit as many host agencies as possible to assist in immigrant placements for meaningful volunteer positions where Maple Bamboo trainees could learn the ropes of mainstream organizations and become active contributors to mainstream organizational boards, community groups and formal advisory councils. 1.3  Research Site  I chose to study the Maple Bamboo Initiative for a number of reasons. First, the local context of planning and public engagement is that with which I am most familiar, having attended the School of Community and Regional Planning at UBC. Second, Metro Vancouver as a regional context is appropriate to the study of immigrant participation in public processes because the region?s immigrant population continues to grow and is changing the demographic makeup of its municipalities. In fact, the City of Vancouver, with 47% immigrant population, has one of the highest foreign-born populations in the world (Hou and Bourne, 2006:1506). As the region?s population grows, its governing bodies and its public and private organizations must begin to reflect and integrate immigrant voices and issues.  As an American citizen, I am taken with Canada?s commitment to multiculturalism and the ways that multiculturalism is addressed at the local level. Michael Adams documents the remarkable story of the Canadian multicultural experience in his book Unlikely Utopia: The Triumph of Canadian Pluralism. In contrast to my own country?s policies and ?melting pot? philosophy that, I believe, foster divisive, anti-immigrant sentiment, the high levels of tolerance and acceptance in Canada are noteworthy. However, in practice, it is also evident that local, provincial and federal institutions lag behind in terms of inclusivity and multicultural representation in their public processes, on formal and informal organizational boards and advisory councils, on steering committees and ultimately, as elected officials. Finally, I want to find out how Maple Bamboo?s training participants apply what they learn in training and integrate their own experiences from their home countries in to their public engagement in local processes in Canada.  I came to MHHS as a volunteer note-taker in the winter of 2007. During my volunteer work, I transcribed impassioned statements made by leaders of the African, Hispanic, Filipino and Bangladeshi communities. It was in these focus groups (where the ideas for training new Canadian immigrants on public processes were formulated) that I became curious about the Maple Bamboo Project?s longer-term implications. The project?s potential to empower immigrants to act on issues most important to them required further investigation. It strikes me that it is through grassroots initiatives that incremental, institutional change is made. It is insufficient to have multicultural policy mandated by the federal and provincial governments. Although capacity building and training are also necessary at the upper levels of government, these topics lie outside the scope of this project. It is the work of agencies such as the Multicultural Helping House that impacts governance and immigrant participation at the local level. The Maple Bamboo Pilot Project is an essential initial step in that direction. 1.4  Project Goal and Objectives  The overall goal of this study is to discern lessons that can be learned from multicultural service agencies? local initiatives such as the Maple Bamboo Pilot Project. Specifically, the study will    3demonstrate the ways in which Canadian immigrants and mainstream host agencies can build their capacities to enhance new immigrants? knowledge and skills in public engagement and encourage more inclusive, representative public processes in Canadian cities.  Four specific objectives guide this study:  1)  To explain how training programs such as Maple Bamboo build the capacity of recent immigrants to engage in public processes. 2)   To assess how non-profit, multicultural service agencies can work effectively with mainstream host agencies to increase their capacity for immigrant inclusion.  3)  To make recommendations to the Multicultural Helping House Society that can contribute to the long-term viability of the Maple Bamboo Initiative  4)  To provide the Multicultural Helping House a tool kit that will help track and administer the program?s outcomes in the future.   The results of the study will benefit multicultural community groups, new immigrants interested in civic engagement, all levels of government in their approaches to multicultural inclusion and host agencies, particularly those committed to the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s objectives. Most importantly, the study?s lessons will be useful to the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s staff as the project expands and evolves over time. 1.5  Methods of Data Collection and Analysis My research methods identified the actors in the Maple Bamboo Initiative as the richest sources of information. I therefore relied on mixed research methods, including primary research through interviews with four participants and four host agencies, meeting notes from focus groups that took place prior to the Maple Bamboo (MB) training sessions, attendance at MB advisory council meetings and staff meetings, MB training evaluations and quantitative data derived from Maple Bamboo participants? application forms. Secondary research consisted of a limited literature review, web research on Metro Vancouver council and community profiles, good practices of civic engagement in Canada and Census data on immigrant population growth in Metro Vancouver.  Primary data sourced from people who have firsthand experience of the project is integrated in my guiding research principles (See Box 1). Informed by Canadian multiculturalism literature and policy reviews, I wanted to ensure that my research and subsequent recommendations were grounded in the lived experience of the MB staff, advisory council members and participants as much as possible. I built on the project?s strengths, while identifying opportunities for improvement. I used consultative group discussion methods to learn how the project has evolved in order to develop strategies to affect its long-term sustainability. My research principles lead my thinking in developing 16 realistic programmatic recommendations. Throughout my research, I experienced both foreseen and unforeseen limitations. The limitations of this study and interview process are as follows: ??   The study took place while the pilot project was still being conducted. ??   Much of the study was completed in the summer of 2007 when many host agencies were unable to host volunteers. Box 1. Guiding Research Principles ??   Build on strengths of the MB Pilot Project. ??   Use consultative, MB participant-driven solutions.??   Identify opportunities for improvement. ??   Learn from what has evolved on the ground.??   Develop strategies for sustainability.??   Suggest viable, implementable recommendations.    4??   The City of Vancouver staff was on strike for 12 weeks and therefore MB municipal participant placements were interrupted. ??   An internal change of Maple Bamboo staff occurred during the pilot project. ??   Interviews were limited to four in-depth participant interviews and four host agency interviews. ??   Only volunteers who were actively involved in public processes contributed to the research findings. These limitations do influence my study?s data collection process. However, I do not see the limitations as constituting any barriers to satisfying the study?s goal and objectives. Although it is too early to conduct a formal evaluation of the pilot project, this study?s analysis can contribute to the Maple Bamboo project?s long-term sustainability. In section 4.11, I discuss the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s progress to account for elapsed time since the interviews took place. Finally, interviews with actively involved participants are instructive in exploring how the Maple Bamboo Initiative has effectively trained and supported new immigrants in civic engagement. 1.6  Organization of the Report  The report is divided into six chapters. Chapter 2 defines the terms that are used throughout the report. It outlines the Canadian multiculturalism policy context as it relates to the goals and objectives of the Maple Bamboo Project. I discuss multicultural policy from the federal to local level with a view of how the Maple Bamboo project itself may be seen as an attempt to fill in the gaps of existing policies.  In chapter 3, I construct the problem in the context of demographic and institutional change. I outline two major underlying dilemmas that make multicultural policy implementation challenging: 1) Public institutions have thus far been unable to adjust traditional systems of governance and decision-making to be more reflective of Canada?s changing demographics; and 2) low levels of immigrant participation in public processes result from various barriers to settlement. Here, the study also introduces case examples of two approaches to visible minority and immigrant inclusion and integration in public processes at the municipal and regional level. One good practice, abcGTA, is housed in a non-profit foundation and works across the Greater Toronto Area to increase visible minority appointments on agencies, boards and commissions. The other good practice, Community Visions, is a municipal initiative of the City of Vancouver that seeks to increase immigrant participation in community planning processes.  Chapter 4 outlines the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s objectives and describes the case study. This chapter introduces qualitative interview findings from Maple Bamboo participants and host agencies that inform the identification of strengths and ongoing challenges to capacity building in the pilot project.  Chapter 5 discusses the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s strengths and challenges and analyzes how these barriers can affect the long-term sustainability of the project. A framework for future program development is offered. Chapter 6 concludes the study with recommendations that synthesize emergent issues identified by Maple Bamboo participant and host agency interviews and lessons applicable from case examples. Recommendations are offered as suggestions on how sustainable long-term success may be achieved.      52  The Conceptual and Policy Context 2.1 Introduction This chapter?s emphasis is on the underlying foundations of the Maple Bamboo Initiative. The Project?s actors and raison d??tre must be examined thoroughly to situate the study in the broader context of multiculturalism and civic engagement in Canada. I examine the complexity of the project?s conceptual and policy underpinnings by clarifying definitions of the key terms recurrent in multiculturalism literature. I then articulate a hybridization of relevant terms with which the Maple Bamboo Initiative pursues its objectives. The intent of the chapter is twofold: first, to clearly state the terms that are used throughout the study. Second, to discuss a limited review of Canadian multicultural policy in order to frame the study.  Conceptually, multiculturalism has become central to the Canadian policy context (Hiebert, 2006, Sandercock, 1998, 2003a, 2003b). Indeed, multiculturalism itself has become intertwined with Canadian national identity and has become a pillar of perceptions of Canada?s goodwill and tolerance. Motivated by a rapidly changing demographic make-up, federal multicultural policy sets forth a framework for Canadian immigrant participation at the municipal, provincial and federal levels (Canadian Heritage http://www.pch.gc.ca/progs/multi/what-multi_e.cfm). Multicultural policy is regarded as fundamental to building a more comprehensive approach to immigrant participation in Canadian governmental and non-governmental sectors.  2.2  Defining terms It is important to define relevant terms, as highly contested as they may be, to establish a common language from which to understand the work of the Maple Bamboo Pilot Project. It is also crucial, in my view, that municipal governments committed to multicultural representation grapple with these terms to ensure consistency and transparency in their processes. Mainstream host agencies that want to expand their membership, diversify their boards, or both, would do well to devise working definitions of the terms most often associated with multiculturalism in practice.  2.2.1  Civic Participation Participation is a central tenet of a democratic political system. The ways that citizens and residents exercise rights to participation are varied (Arnstein, 1969). Fundamentally, civic participation promotes a shared interest in the way our society functions and decisions are made that affect us all. In her civic engagement study of Toronto?s Sri Lankan Tamil community, Leslie Dickout cites an apt definition for civic participation, adopted by the organization1 with which she worked closely:  Civic participation represents the patterning of how we share a common space, common resources, and common opportunities and manage interdependence in that ?company of strangers? which constitutes the public. More specifically, it is the process whereby citizens? concerns, needs, values, expectations and problems are taken into account in the governmental decision-making process (Dickout, 2004:16).                                                       1Initiated in 2003, Project Participate brings together community members, policy makers, researchers and academics to identify barriers to participation faced by the Sri Lankan Tamil community in Toronto. As a community development process centred on empowerment, Project Participate seeks to educate all members of the Tamil community about the economic, political and social system in which they live, how it works, and how to participate within it. The project emphasizes that through their contribution of resources, skills, energy and education in the ?mainstream?, not only will the Tamil community benefit, but so will the overall city (Dickout, 2004:16).      6Civic participation is defined by the former Maple Bamboo Project Coordinator as ?anything to do with people being involved in public life in their community, neighbourhood or country. It could vary in scope and theme ? from political involvement to coaching your kid?s team after school. It is driven by people?s desire to become a part of the society and their care for the prosperity of this society: economical, social, environmental, etc.? (Scherbina, pers. comm., 2007). I define civic participation as the ability of all Canadians, regardless of their ethnic background, language ability, socioeconomic class, education, religion, ability or sexual orientation, to act and affect government responses to issues of concern to themselves and their communities. Civic participation is defined by the citizen?s (or resident?s) active role in shaping, defining and changing policies and procedures that impact his or her life (Pateman, 1970; Putnam, 2000; Wyman, 2000).  2.2.2  ?New Immigrant? Although ?new immigrant? or ?newcomer? generally implies someone who immigrated to Canada in the last three to five years, for the purposes of the Maple Bamboo Initiative training and volunteer pilot project, ?new immigrant? does not necessarily refer to the amount of time that the participant has been in Canada. It is widely understood that different people within immigrant groups adjust variously to being in a new country (Standing Committee on Citizenship and Integration, 2001). Readiness to engage in public processes may come quickly or take longer depending on a person?s disposition, combined with a variety of other factors.  Therefore, when I use ?new immigrant? to describe Maple Bamboo participants, the term encompasses immigrants who may have been here for more than five years. These participants, despite the fact that they may have been living in Canada for up to ten years, are unfamiliar with mainstream Canadian public processes and participation. Their Maple Bamboo involvement comes from a desire to learn how political processes function and integrate more fully into Canadian society. 2.2.3  Multiculturalism Although multiculturalism as a concept is infused with general tolerance and goodwill, it lacks a concrete definition. The Federal Ministry that oversees multicultural policy in Canada, Canadian Heritage, defines multiculturalism as follows: Canadian multiculturalism is fundamental to our belief that all citizens are equal. Multiculturalism ensures that all citizens can keep their identities, can take pride in their ancestry and have a sense of belonging. Acceptance gives Canadians a feeling of security and self-confidence, making them more open to, and accepting of, diverse cultures. ?The Canadian experience? (my emphasis) has shown that multiculturalism encourages racial and ethnic harmony and cross-cultural understanding, and discourages ghettoization, hatred, discrimination and violence (Canadian Heritage website www.canadianheritage.ca). In much of her work on multiculturalism, Leonie Sandercock points to multiculturalism theory and policies as highly contested and in need of constant challenge. She argues that multiculturalism must be open to redefinition as immigrant populations continue to expand and change and the notions that inform belonging and citizenship evolve over time (Sandercock, 1998, 2003a, 2003b). The Maple Bamboo Initiative actualizes a concrete form of multiculturalism through the objectives of its pilot project. Participants from seven immigrant communities participate in training together. The project then goes on to place participants in mainstream organizations, a practice that effectively reduces ghettoization and challenges static multiculturalism that can perpetuate ethnic enclaves. The project?s aim is instead to encourage integration and mutual learning.    7The definition of multiculturalism that I will use in this report draws on the idea of active multiculturalism introduced by Samara Brock in her master?s thesis:  Innovations that can aid in the transition from a passive or shallow multiculturalism to an active or rich multiculturalism, wherein new immigrants do not bear the responsibility of one-sided adaptation, need to be examined. How do we shift the focus of multicultural policy from ?an institutional project which funds and promotes staged ethnic representations? to a more profound project with real impacts at the local level (Brock, 2006:5)? The Maple Bamboo Initiative does just that. The pilot project establishes an active multiculturalism between participants and mainstream host agencies wherein mutual learning occurs and new immigrants and mainstream organizations both benefit. This form of multiculturalism integrates the concepts in the Canadian Heritage definition quoted above. Maple Bamboo participants? form of multiculturalism is actively engaged and is continually redefined by the actors from ethnic communities volunteering in mainstream host agencies and participating in public processes. 2.2.4  Public Process I use the City of Vancouver?s definition of public processes. Although this definition is used in the context of Vancouver?s municipal government, the set of principles that guide the definition can be applied to government and non-government public processes at all levels. Public involvement processes are designed to:  ??   Inform citizens, groups and organizations about specific decisions likely to affect their lives. ??   Ensure all views are considered in planning and decision-making.  ??   Create joint visions that speak to multiple interests and concerns. ??   Initiate action to resolve issues and problems. Above all, public processes aim to inspire people, groups, and organizations to take an active role in caring for and enriching their community. Doing so builds the longer-term capacity of the City and its citizens to work together for a healthier, safer and more vibrant community (City of Vancouver Community Services Public Involvement Guide http://www.city.vancouver.bc.ca/commsvcs/planning/pubinvolveguide/). Public processes as described by Olga Scherbina, the MB project?s former project coordinator who is also a recent Ukrainian immigrant and an active participant in a variety of immigrant civic engagement forums, are any processes in which public involvement can make a difference in the way things are done in the public or private sectors. Maple Bamboo participants are trained on the various forms of public processes, including those that affect their families, children and communities. From participation in public forums to advisory councils, from school board meetings to public library boards to individual meetings with Members of Parliament, participants gain the knowledge and confidence to engage in public processes and thereby ensure a seat at the table that they choose (Scherbina, pers. comm., 2007). 2.2.5  Inclusivity In a concept paper for the Laidlaw Foundation in Toronto, Canada, Christa Freiler describes the meaning of social inclusion/exclusion:  Social inclusion is not just about the periphery versus the centre; it is about participating as a valued member of society. Inclusion makes the link between the well being of children, our common humanity, and the social, economic, political and cultural conditions that must exist in a just and compassionate society (Clutterbuck and Novick, 2003:4).    8In order to realize a more just and compassionate society that places inclusion as a central tenet in achieving that ideal, the responsibility lies not only with individuals but also with institutions. As Clutterbuck and Novick point out in their 2003 report entitled Building Inclusive Communities: Cross-Canada Perspectives and Strategies:  It is within municipalities that basic states of social inclusion are cultivated and experienced. It is within civic communities that the relationships between citizenship and diversity are established. When social vulnerabilities and racial differences lead to serious disparities of circumstances and prospects?then diversity is stripped of dignity and citizenship is devoid of mutual responsibility (Clutterbuck and Novick, 2003:28). The Maple Bamboo Initiative actively engages in mutual responsibility for inclusive practice with host agencies and participant volunteers. In this sense, it can be seen as groundbreaking, as it takes inclusive rhetoric and applies it with on the ground implementation. Inclusivity, for the purposes of this study, is defined as the active integration of immigrant participation into a variety of public processes.  2.2.6  Diversity  Diversity, a highly contested concept, must be more explicitly examined. Diversity as a general term invokes images of tolerance; of people from different ethnic backgrounds holding hands in celebration of an ideal, inclusive (and often imaginary) community. I focus here on a pivotal aspect of diversity that is often overlooked. An institutional commitment to diversity as a means to achieving inclusivity is necessary.  In my view, it is not enough to celebrate diversity in cultural festivals and on municipal diversity advisory councils. We must reach beyond superficial acknowledgements of diversity to profoundly impact the institutions from which changes can be made. Paul de Freitas in his work on increasing diversity of public appointments in Greater Toronto emphasizes the connection between citizenship and representation:  ?In order to ensure the full participation of all citizens, government in all its forms must  reflect the population it purports to represent? (de Freitas, 2004:4). Diversity through representation in public processes and on public and private boards is fundamental to achieving representative multicultural democracy.  Conceptually, diversity must be adopted into the fabric of society with more than tokenistic attempts. Through the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s efforts, institutions can demonstrate their commitments to diversity in a formalized and integrated fashion. The potential for ripple effects are substantial as representative diversity can change how decisions are made and which institutional directions are pursued as a result.  2.3  Current Multicultural Policy in Canada  The evolution of multiculturalism in Canada signifies recognition of the multitude of talents and contributions immigrants bring to this society. Brock aptly summarizes this point in her master?s thesis: Multicultural policy has always been about more than managing the coexistence of disparate groups of people. It has, at its most fundamental, been about changing the story of a nation to include multiple identities, multiple histories, and multiple ways of being Canadian (Brock, 2006:22).  The building blocks are in place to build a wide reaching, active multiculturalism that can tell that changing Canadian story. However, several challenges arise as gaps in policy pose difficulties to locally based projects such as the Maple Bamboo Initiative. I will discuss these challenges after a brief review of current government multicultural policies.     92.3.1  Multicultural Act of Canada (1971,1988) Multicultural policy originated in Canada in 1971 and was the product of a tense and unresolved relationship between French and English-speaking Canada. Multiculturalism was not a goal or a vision in and of itself but was seen as a politically necessary addition to a national bilingual policy introduced to recognize Francophones in Quebec. Multiculturalism was introduced so that bilingualism would not create extra problems (Wood and Gilbert, 2005:682). The Federal Multicultural Act, adopted in 1988, is rooted in a respect for the various cultures found in Canada. The Canadian policy is differentiated from its southerly neighbour?s as the antithesis of a ?melting pot? ideology. Canadian multiculturalism blazed the trail of cultural pluralism. Within the larger society, immigrant groups maintain their unique cultural identities. Not only do they coexist side by side, immigrant groups? cultural traditions also begin to be reflected in the ?dominant? Canadian culture (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_pluralism). Cultural pluralism can be argued to have both strengths and weaknesses. Some see it as a sanctioning of ethnic enclaves and segregation while others recognize its strengths in promoting tolerance and respect for Canada?s rich diversity in the context of a transnational society (Hiebert and Ley, 2003). Federal policy has laid the groundwork for the Maple Bamboo Initiative and other multicultural service agencies to assist with employment, social services and English language acquisition in immigrant communities. Federal multicultural policy has two specific sub areas relevant to the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s capacity-building program quoted below: Section 3.1 ?It is hereby declared to be the policy of the Government of Canada to: (c) promote the full and equitable participation of individuals and communities of all origins in the continuing evolution and shaping of all aspects of Canadian society and assist them in the elimination of any barrier to that participation; (e) ensure that all individuals receive equal treatment and equal protection under the law, while respecting and valuing their diversity? However, in terms of implementation, the policy outlines only one strategy for capacity- building techniques: Section 5.1 ?The Minister shall take such measures as the Minister considers appropriate to implement the multiculturalism policy of Canada and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, may (a) encourage and assist individuals, organizations and institutions to project the multicultural reality of Canada in their activities in Canada and abroad (Canadian Heritage website). Although provisions exist for new immigrants to participate equally in Canadian public processes, there is a gap in the implementation of this policy at the local level. It is neither within the Federal Government?s mandate nor authority to ensure that every municipality is actively pursuing inclusive, multicultural public processes. Multiculturalism was introduced without any real idea of what it would mean or any long-term strategy for its implementation (Kymlicka, 1998:40). Because the broad policy has been set forth with vague language open to interpretation, gaps emerge between what the federal government may have aspired to achieve through multicultural policy and what is (or, more importantly, what is not) being implemented on the ground (Hutton and Edgington, 2002; Sandercock, 2005, 2003a, 2003b; Brock, 2006). 2.3.2  Multicultural Policy in British Columbia (1993) The BC Provincial Multicultural Act was not adopted until 1993. This policy is, in part, a response to a significant increase in immigrant populations settling in British Columbia, particularly Hong Kong Chinese immigrants in Richmond and Vancouver in the 1990s. It has been estimated that international immigration accounted for over 80 per cent of the lower mainland?s growth between 1991 and 1996 (Edgington and Hutton, 2002:10).    10There are four major thrusts to BC?s multicultural policy: ??   Recognition of BC?s diversity as a fundamental trait of its society; ??   Respect for BC?s multicultural heritage; ??   Promotion of cross-cultural understanding; and ??   Support for participation in all aspects (economic, social, cultural and political) of BC life (Province of British Columbia, 2006). In her 2005 Laurier Institution Speech, ?A Lifelong Pregnancy? Immigrants and the Crisis of Multiculturalism,? Leonie Sandercock points out the recent shifts in provincial funding allocations for multicultural programs: ?In 2005, BC had the lowest national per immigrant landing spending of its integrated, fully-funded services.?  In June 2007, the WelcomeBC Initiative was introduced and provides $217 million in provincial and federal government funding over the next two years. The Initiative is designed to assist immigrants with access to English classes, provide funding for more settlement workers in lower mainland schools and improve information and outreach services for refugees (Oppal, 2007). The WelcomeBC Initiative begins to harmonize provincial and federal multicultural policy. However, there is very little funding devoted to capacity building for civic participation in public processes, an issue that is perhaps not seen as critical to the immediate needs of new immigrants. In light of this gap and BC Multicultural Policy being restricted to one act only, the Province fails to give local governments a strong mandate to work on multicultural issues such as new immigrant participation in public processes (Ley and Murphy, 2001). 2.3.3  City of Vancouver/ Metro Vancouver Multiculturalism Policies The expansion of funding for multicultural initiatives at the local level is fundamental to a more comprehensive approach to immigrant civic participation in Canadian governmental and non-governmental sectors. In general, local governments could be considered the ?Cinderella? level of government when it comes to multiculturalism (Edgington and Hutton, 2002:10). Although there has been an increase in overall funding for immigrant services and multicultural programs by federal and BC governments, there has been a relative neglect of multicultural issues by municipalities in the region. I now provide a brief overview of the municipalities that do have a multicultural policy in place.  The City of Vancouver adopted a municipal multiculturalism policy in 1988 that recognizes strength in diversity. The City aims to ensure access to civic services for all residents regardless of their backgrounds (City of Vancouver Civic Multicultural Policy, 1988). Other municipalities in British Columbia are often hard pressed to find funding for such policies, as they have only a vague and optional mandate to work on multicultural issues at the local level (Ley and Murphy, 2001). However, all of the four core municipalities of Burnaby, Richmond, Vancouver and New Westminster in Metro Vancouver have multicultural policies in place. Of the middle areas, many of which are experiencing tremendous growth in immigrant settlement, only three of nine have multicultural policies in place (Edgington and Hutton, 2002:12).2  The City of Vancouver stands out in the region with its diverse array of multicultural programming. For example, the social planning department has one multicultural planner dedicated to issues of diversity and immigrant representation on city planning and social planning issues. Vancouver also makes immigrant participation central to its neighbourhood visioning program through                                                       2 Middle municipal areas of the Metro Vancouver include District of West Vancouver, District of North Vancouver, City of North Vancouver, Village of Lions Bay, City of Port Moody, City of Coquitlam, City of Port Coquitlam, City of Delta and City of Surrey (Edgington and Hutton, 2002:12).    11translation and multilingual interpreters present at community meetings.3 In 1994, a Special Advisory Committee on Diversity Issues was formed to advise the city council on various policy-related issues regarding inclusivity and diverse citizen participation (City of Vancouver, 2006). Mayor Sam Sullivan also oversees the Mayor?s Working Group on Immigration. Vancouver established a multicultural outreach and translation strategy in 1999 that was a natural complement to the Newcomer?s Guide; it is available on the city?s website in four languages. City staff developed this strategy to pursue a more consistent and effective outreach and translation approach. The strategy built on how to improve civic awareness and community contact with new immigrants (City of Vancouver, 1999).  Finally, the City of Vancouver has been a major operational funder of the Multicultural Helping House where the Maple Bamboo Initiative is housed. It will continue its support with the Multicultural Helping House?s expansion efforts to move in to a larger facility called the Multicultural Village. City of Vancouver staff will assist MHHS to find a new location where its immigrant housing, social and employment services will be located in the future (City of Vancouver, 2007).  2.3.4  Challenges of Multicultural Policy Implementation  Although Canadian federal, provincial and local multicultural policies provide a framework for action, it is often the non-profit multicultural service providers, such as MHHS, that implement programs to work toward realizing the goals of these policies. To achieve more pro-active government involvement in multicultural policy implementation, a coordinated effort between all levels of government will be necessary. Multiple challenges to policy implementation remain: ??   Coordination between all levels of government is needed. ??   Multi-level government approach should be more comprehensive.    ??   Government departments lack capacity to advance an inclusive agenda.  ??   There are regional differences in approach; the relevance of multicultural policy in some places is not as urgent as in others. ??   Municipal governments do not receive funding for nor is it within their mandate to implement multicultural policy.  ??   Funding sources and amounts change depending on the legislative agenda (Sandercock, 2003, 2005; Edgington and Hutton, 2002; Koeller, 2005).  The Maple Bamboo Initiative is itself an attempt by a non-governmental organization to fill gaps and address the challenges of existing Canadian multicultural policies. Because the terms in policies are vague and difficult to implement in concrete terms, it is difficult for widespread, consistent multicultural targets to be set at a regional or municipal level. It may be more effective for community based organizations who are familiar with immigrant communities and the barriers to civic participation they face to actively pursue Canadian multicultural policy ideals through practical strategic programs. As listed above, governments face many changing variables depending on which political party is in power and how much funding is allocated to multicultural policy implementation. Coordination and feedbacks loops with respect to immigrant civic engagement are necessary, especially with regard to liaising with community groups. Locally based projects are an obvious place to start to build new immigrant capacity in decision-making and public process involvement.                                                         3 A more detailed explanation of Community Visions is offered in section 3.4.2.     123  Situating the Problem 3.1  Introduction  In this chapter, two major underlying dilemmas are outlined that point to the need for this research report. As addressed in chapter 2, frameworks and policies are in place at all levels of government for multiculturalism to be reflected in decision-making and civic engagement. In fact, in the most recent annual report on the Operation of the Canadian Multiculturalism Act, the subheadings that concentrate on civic participation include: making Canadian institutions more reflective of Canadian diversity, ?civic participation? through community-driven projects and ?institutional change? projects funded by the multiculturalism program (Government of Canada, 2005). The problem does not lie, then, with a lack of policy or vision; it lies in equipping institutional and community actors with the ability and capacity to implement multicultural policy and actualize inclusive civic participation.  The Maple Bamboo Initiative seeks to address two areas that make multicultural policy implementation challenging: First, public institutions have thus far been unable to adjust traditional systems of governance and decision-making to be more reflective of Canada?s changing demographics. Here, the study focuses specifically on Metro Vancouver while also drawing on broad trends at the federal level. A discussion of the present-day reality will further illustrate this dilemma. Second, low levels of immigrant participation in public processes result from various barriers to settlement. A general overview of barriers to immigrant integration follows, drawing on academic, statistical and policy reports that document the problem. I then introduce case examples of two approaches to visible minority and immigrant inclusion and integration in public processes at the municipal and regional level. The abcGTA, a program of the Maytree Foundation in the City of Toronto, works to increase visible minority representation in the Greater Toronto Area. Community Visions, a municipal initiative of the City of Vancouver, attempts to increase immigrant inclusion and participation in community planning processes. Finally, the role of targets in achieving multicultural policy implementation is explored.   3.2  The Present-Day Reality  Canada?s leadership on multicultural policy is well documented in academic literature (Ley, 2007; Bloemraad, 2006; Hiebert, 2006; Kymlicka, 1998). In the 2006 edition of Canadian Ethnic Studies, the need for continuous reflection, adaptation and revision of the Canadian multiculturalism ideal is noted. As Belkhodja explains, ?Something appears to be working in Canada. However, a multicultural future requires on-going commitment to constructive dialogue and to the constant appraisal of policies and practices in order to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse population? (Belkhodja, 2006). Canada?s ongoing success and prospects for the future hinge on the country?s capacity to bring people of all ethno-cultural backgrounds together to build a society where everyone?s identity and cultural heritage are respected (Government of Canada, 2006:21). Despite the accolades, immigrant integration in political processes, public consultations and leadership positions is lacking. Evidence suggests that Canadian public institutions are not keeping pace with Canada?s increasing cultural diversity (Government of Canada, 2006:16). This is likely due to the challenges that large, bureaucratic government institutions face when a commitment to policy is coupled with a practical implementation component. For example, an on-line survey of departmental liaisons to Canadian government institutions commissioned in 2005 revealed a stark contrast between departments? commitment to multiculturalism in theory and how it is (or is not) adopted in practice.  In the survey, almost all respondents (93%) reported that issues of diversity and multiculturalism are either sometimes or always considered in policy and program development. However, when asked how often federal institutions consulted with ethno-cultural groups to ensure inclusion of their viewpoints, one-quarter of respondents had never engaged ethno-cultural community groups    13in their policy and program development. Another quarter of the respondents did not have an answer or did not respond to the question, while almost one-quarter (23%) of federal institutions did engage ethno-cultural organizations in consultations, at a significant rate of four or more times in the year 2004-2005 (Government of Canada, 2006).    Statistics Canada projects that 20%, or one in five Canadians, will be visible minorities by 2017, compared to 13.4% in 2001. In Vancouver, projections estimate that more than half of the population (1.4 million people) will be foreign born by 2017 (Hiebert, 2005). Many analysts believe that it is time for civic participation in Metro Vancouver to catch up with, or at least begin to mirror, its demographic change (Wyman, 2006). As Edgington and Hutton assert: ?the local level of government may have a special responsibility for multiculturalism policy as it is often at the front-line of issues as a consequence of each city?s changing demographic profile (Edgington and Hutton, 2002: 22). Figure 2 illustrates Metro Vancouver?s core and middle municipalities? immigrant populations in 2006 compared with 1996. Census data indicate that immigrant populations in Burnaby, Coquitlam, City of North Vancouver, Richmond and Surrey have increased significantly in this ten-year period. Percent change in immigrant population in Surrey and Port Moody is particularly high, followed by New Westminster with 67%, 61.2% and 46.4% respectively. Although it is not possible to find data on institutional changes in leadership and immigrant participation in the myriad of municipal public processes, the elected City Council profiles give a good indication of who is and is not being represented. Of the 21 municipalities in Metro Vancouver, only four have visible minorities on their City councils (municipal websites, 2007): City of Vancouver, City of Richmond, Pitt Meadows and City of Burnaby. The issue of ?representativeness? has long been recognized as a problematic aspect in citizen involvement (Healey, 1992, 1997, Wayland, 2006). Where dramatic demographic shifts have occurred and will likely continue, creative public engagement strategies that adequately represent and integrate thousands of new immigrant voices in these communities are needed.  Based on past population growth patterns and an increasingly severe housing affordability crisis in Metro Vancouver?s core municipalities, we can predict that immigrant populations, particularly of the seven emerging immigrant communities that the Maple Bamboo Initiative trains, will continue to rise (see Figure 3 for ethno-cultural origins of recent immigrants in Metro Vancouver). How then can we measure the extent to which institutions are adjusting to that change? Based on the research conducted for this report, which included a literature review of immigrant participation in public processes, it is fair to conclude that there is a general lack of data when it comes to immigrant civic engagement in Canada. Although voting records can illustrate general voting patterns at the municipal, provincial and federal levels, only Canadian citizens are eligible to vote. Thus the large permanent resident population of the immigrant sector is unaccounted for. There are also multiple other ways for immigrants to become involved in government and non-profit decision-making aside from voting and formal public processes. However, tracking these data consistently across jurisdictions does not seem to occur. A staff member from abcGTA, a leadership training program for visible minorities discussed in section 3.4.1, points out important questions for Canadian institutions in major metropolitan areas: What?s changing in terms of how institutions within these geographic areas which are viewing such dramatic growth in their immigrant populations? What needs to change? Is a cultural shift required? Is it changing? Is it shifting? Or are institutions still out of sync? Nine times out of ten, institutions are playing catch up. They have not anticipated or prepared for the amount of change that?s happening in the world around them (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007).      14Figure 2. Percent Immigrant Population in Core and Middle Municipalities in Metro Vancouver, 1996 & 2006  Source: Statistics Canada, 1996 & 2006 Despite assertions of a commitment, in principle, to multiculturalism, it is important to go deeper in understanding the reasons why municipal and non-profit boards are not as diverse as they could be. If you look at senior management and if you look at who?s on their boards, it?s still very ?white male? dominated. So, if you say you?re truly committed to diversity, why isn?t that reflected at all levels of your organization? More often than not, the response to that question is, ?Oh, we don?t get applications.? ?That?s because you?re not asking? is the easy answer. They don?t even know who to ask. They don?t have the networks, they don?t have the connections. Typically board members are recruited by existing members who explore their limited networks: people who they play golf with, who they go to church with, who their kids play hockey with. That?s a recruitment process that is highly unlikely to generate diversity (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007). Community-based, immigrant service organizations that facilitate immigrant inclusion in mainstream governmental and non-profit organizations are vital to building capacity for truly multicultural representation on boards and committees, advisory councils, public consultations and decision-making processes. These organizations have established connections with immigrant communities. The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s two-pronged approach that prepares new immigrants on public participation and builds alliances with mainstream host agencies is one example of how civic participation can grow through community-driven projects. When Canadian government institutions, at whatever level, work collaboratively with immigrant service organizations, they can begin to be more reflective of Canadian diversity.  41.8%32.0%24.3%33.5%25.7%32.3%28.0%23.1%24.1%48.3%29.7%44.9%50.8%39.4%28.1%27.9%31.7%36.5%31.7%29.3%57.4%38.3%47.0%28.2%0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%BurnabyCoquitlamDeltaLions BayNew WestminsterCity of North VancouverDistrict of North VancouverPort CoquitlamPort MoodyRichmondSurreyVancouverPercent Immigrant Population19962006   15 Figure 3. Recent Immigrants' Birthplace, 1991-1996, 2001-2006  Source: Statistics Canada, 2006 3.3  Lack of Immigrant Participation Presently, there is agreement among knowledgeable observers that immigrant participation on local boards, advisory committees, at public meetings and in community consultations is lower than it could be. (Scherbina, 2007; Guerrero-Campbell 2007; Wayland, 2006). Recent social and economic indicators reveal that communities with high concentrations of visible minorities and immigrants also demonstrate lower civic, political and economic participation (Government of Canada, 2005:14). In a 2003 study of the Sri Lankan Tamil experience of integration in Toronto and Vancouver, a focus group participant points out some possible reasons for immigrants? hesitance to voice their concerns:  How is it going to help me? my participation, how is it going to impact? If I don?t believe in the system, if I don?t understand the whole system, then you know you have problems. You won?t be able to engage them, you won?t be able to empower them and thereby you won?t be able to make any changes? so we should look at those factors. Why is it that they are not engaged? It could be language, it could be resources, it could be that the system is indifferent to their participation (Sandercock, Dickout and Winkler, 2004:34). 3.3.1  Individual Barriers to Participation Multicultural policies alone are insufficient in motivating immigrant participation. New immigrants require access to information and training on how Canadian public processes function. They continue to face multiple barriers to civic participation in their everyday lives. Limitations that impede access to formal channels of participation include: 2,4552,8654,79539,7902,87020,93516,4604,24018,7703,665- 10,000 20,000 30,000 40,000 50,000Central AmericaSouth AmericaAfricaChinaHong KongOther Eastern AsiaPhilippinesOther Southeast AsiaIndiaOther Southern AsiaBirth Place2001-20061991-1996   16??   Limited English language ability. ??   Distrust of government from home country. ??   Lack of foreign credential recognition.4 ??   Lack of familiarity with Canadian systems of government. ??   Lack of confidence. ??   Focus on basic needs such as employment and housing. ??   Limited time. These barriers have been widely studied (George, 2002, George and Michalski, 1996, Simich, 2000). They were repeatedly cited in Maple Bamboo Initiative focus group discussions as the primary reasons for an apparent lack of immigrant involvement in Metro Vancouver?s public processes. Although agencies such as MHHS, Mosaic and S.U.C.C.E.S.S. are seen as leaders in immigrant settlement service provision in BC, civic engagement has not traditionally been a priority area, as basic needs take precedence for most new immigrants. Settlement organizations must also offer opportunities for immigrants to become actively involved in public issues important to them. As one Maple Bamboo participant points out: I think half the population is from immigration. So basically a good chunk of the population that, at the end, that will be involved in, I don?t know, something. So what?s gonna happen? People coming and if they?re not interested or they don?t care or they want to, but there is no way for them to get involved; then they just drop the idea to do that (Maple Bamboo participant 04 interview, 2007). The Maple Bamboo Initiative fills a gap and encourages integration on a deeper level. Without a project like this committed to diverse representation in the public sphere, interested new immigrants may not find opportunities to engage in mainstream public processes. The MHHS acts as a conduit to develop the potential for ongoing, substantive immigrant civic participation in addition to addressing the immediate settlement needs of its clients. Civic participation can lead to the formation of strong ties to a community and, in time, to a sense of individual identity. Citizenship, thus, is not just an abstract concept. Simich explains the pivotal role that participation plays in [immigrant] identity formation:  Cities are places where actual citizenship is brought to life, where individuals create identities, engage in politics and claim rights as part of cultural groups and social movements. Observers in many cities of immigration have noted that some of the most critical issues in civic participation have been cultural, not strictly political or economic. This expression of civic participation tests social cohesion, which, to accommodate diversity, must emphasize mutual respect as much as common values (Simich, 2000:23-24). It is important to recognize that formal and informal civic engagement techniques affect participation and decision-making in different ways. Individuals, immigrant or not, engage variously, depending on the context of engagement opportunities. One Maple Bamboo host agency representative summarizes the issue eloquently:                                                       4 Foreign credential recognition is a significant barrier to immigrant integration in Canada. It is a policy question that requires extensive examination and reform. This question lies outside the scope of this research project. However, professional recognition (or lack thereof) certainly impacts Maple Bamboo participants. For further information on foreign credential recognition, please refer to Jeffrey Reitz?s Immigrant Success in the Knowledge Economy, 2001, or Breton and Reitz?s Globalization and Society: Processes of Differentiation Examined, 2003. Lesleyanne Hawthorne also writes extensively on the topic in The Question of Discrimination: Skilled Migrants' Access to Australian Employment, 1997 and The Globalisation of the Nursing Workforce: Barriers Confronting Overseas Qualified Nurses in Australia, 2001.    17When people do not engage, or do not respond to whatever way you think they will, let?s not so easily blame them for being not responsive or lazy or not caring because it may be deeper than that. Different people engage themselves differently. And we just shouldn?t judge them with one set of standards (Maple Bamboo host agency representative 01 interview, 2007). 3.3.2  Institutional Barriers to Participation  Mutual respect and common values are often assumed in the frameworks of multicultural policies discussed in chapter 2. Values are infused into the format of our public processes and can therefore make them exclusionary and difficult to access. Academic literature that explores structural and institutional rigidity as a primary concern of inclusivity in democratic processes is outside the scope of this report. The formality and rigidity of many mainstream organization participation processes is a significant barrier, in addition to those listed above, to immigrant engagement. There are countless alternative forms of public participation that can facilitate immigrants? public involvement aside from formal council meetings, public forums and board memberships. In this study however, I focus on the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s objectives, which are indeed situated in mainstream processes. Although formal processes are often critiqued as limited in scope, format and function (Forester, 1989; Sandercock, 1998, 2003b; Healy, 1992), government and non-profit decision-making bodies are mainstream points of entry for citizens and permanent residents who are often marginalized or invisible in formal processes. The Maple Bamboo case study illuminates the potential for gradual institutional change through increased immigrant visibility in Canadian public processes. It is with that lens that immigrant participation is pursued throughout this report.  3.4  Good Practices: Public Engagement Techniques  This section introduces case examples of two approaches to visible minority and immigrant inclusion and integration in public processes at the municipal and regional level. The abcGTA is a Maytree Foundation program and works throughout the Greater Toronto Area to increase visible minority appointments on agencies, boards and commissions. Community Visions is a municipal initiative of the City of Vancouver that aims to make community consultations and planning processes accessible to immigrants who want to participate. 3.4.1  Toronto: abcGTA Established in 1982, the Maytree Foundation is a charitable foundation located in Toronto, Canada. The Maytree Foundation?s work is guided by four principles: a strong Canada should be served by responsive, dynamic institutions and government that act as equalizers of social inequality; communities have the potential to resolve their own problems; leadership is essential in affecting social change; and a diversity of people, approaches, perspectives and experiences is essential to the strengthening of our society (Maytree Foundation Annual Report, 2006).5  Established in 2005, the abcGTA program stands for agencies, boards and commissions (abc) in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and works to ensure that governance bodies in public agencies are reflective of Toronto?s incredibly diverse demographic composition. abcGTA does not derive empowerment from numbers only. An institutional commitment to diversity is present in their program philosophy, explained on their website: Diversity is more than statistics, ratios and numbers. We act out of a strong conviction that real diversity brings added value to organizations and to society at large as it allows us to tap into and benefit from broader perspectives, experiences, networks and knowledge. Diversity will also help public institutions in strengthening their ties with all stakeholders and increase their accountability to the public that they serve (abcGTA http://www.abcgta.ca/index2.asp, 2007).                                                       5 For more information about the mission and programs of the Maytree Foundation, please see the agency?s website http://www.maytree.com/    18The abcGTA links visible minority candidates who are qualified and experienced in Canadian public processes to boards, committees and organizations that desire diverse candidates on their leadership rosters.  3.4.1.1  abcGTA Candidate Selection Process In Toronto, there is a groundswell of interest in abcGTA candidates as non-profit organizations in particular aspire to achieve inclusive representation on their boards. However, it is difficult for theses boards to recruit people from diverse backgrounds with few or no connections to ethno-racial communities already established. The abcGTA selects highly qualified individuals from visible minority communities through a rigorous process. One selection criterion is that candidates share the values of the Maytree Foundation in terms of social change through leadership. abcGTA participants benefit from their appointments personally and possess a strong commitment to their community?s interests and to institutional change rooted in an equity mandate (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007). In an interview, an abcGTA staff person noted that: ?It?s not just about you getting appointed to a board, but remembering that once you?re in, to leave the door open for others to follow you, helping to create an environment where diversity is always on the agenda? (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007).  The abcGTA fosters relationships with mainstream organizations and equips them with the tools for a successful match. Their board mentoring toolkit (see Appendix E) lays out specific tasks for board mentors and mentees in order to develop mentees? leadership capacity within the organization. Host agency selection is essential to abcGTA?s development and recognition in the greater Toronto community. abcGTA?s project manager offers the strategic nature of the agency?s alliances:    Our strategy has always been to go after what we call ?low hanging fruit?. We need to demonstrate success before it [the program] catches on. So we go after the ten boards that we know are more progressive and will understand the issue [the social change mission and equity mandate]. That have the resources to train and bring in people who may have never served on a board before, and then place them there and build on those successes to continue to promote the program (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007). The abcGTA pre-screens program candidates who possess professional competencies that will benefit boards, agencies and commissions. Candidates bring a diversity of perspectives and life experiences that go beyond the colour of their skin (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007). However, abcGTA candidates still have a lot of work to do to affect organizational change. Tokenism is a challenge many abcGTA candidates deal with regularly: ?Though we do ask boards to think about the program as more than tokenism, it?s possible that a number of our candidates are one or one of two ?diverse? people on a board. Which leaves it up to the candidate to make the most of their role, and given our rigorous screening process, we?re confident that they can do so?(abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007).  3.4.1.2  abcGTA?s Similarities and Differences to the Maple Bamboo Initiative The abcGTA?s objectives are similar to those of the Maple Bamboo Initiative in that both projects identify a gap in immigrant/visible minority representation on decision-making bodies. Each programmatically addresses that gap by making connections between interested public institutions and underrepresented individuals central to their work. However, abcGTA does not focus exclusively on new immigrants. In fact, few of their over 200 qualified candidates are newcomers. Many abcGTA participants are more often second-generation immigrants who are fairly established in terms of their settlement, but self-identify as coming from underrepresented ethno-cultural, ethno-racial groups (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007). Although the program models for formal civic engagement are different, the Maple Bamboo Initiative is likely to encounter similar obstacles. As a representative from abcGTA points out:  The model that worked for abcGTA may not work for everyone, and we?re not suggesting a cookie cutter approach. Having said that, many of the things that we    19run in to, others will run in to as well which is part of the reason why people from these communities don?t bother applying when they hear about board vacancies ? if they hear about them. More often than not, they don?t even know that these opportunities exist (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007). It is instructive to examine the abcGTA not for exact parallels to the Maple Bamboo Initiative, but for lessons that can be learned and applied in its future development. As Canadian multiculturalism is touted to encourage ethnic and racial harmony and discourage ethnic enclaves (Bloemraad, 2006, Canadian Heritage, 2007) isolation in immigrant communities still exists. One of the motivating factors to launch abcGTA was to build bridges between the larger Canadian society and extremely successful immigrants who are completely disengaged from that ?wider? community (abcGTA, pers. comm., 2007). Although there are significant differences between abcGTA and the Maple Bamboo Initiative, this case example offers lessons in leadership development and strategic planning (see Box 2). While abcGTA?s candidates generally have two to three years of governance experience whereas Maple Bamboo applicants have rarely participated in Canadian public processes before, both programs strive to shift the dominant paradigm to be more inclusive. Leadership in public engagement is central to both programs? missions. Both programs are relatively new and, at present, lack enough participants for a self-sustaining pool of qualified candidates.  Both programs? outcome measurements are broad: abcGTA measures how many candidates they have, the number of boards that enroll in the program and how many appointments are made. A similar tracking system is used to measure outcomes for the Maple Bamboo Project. Finally and importantly, each program meets a demand in the community, on the organizational and individual participant level. Each program will potentially have long lasting impacts on their respective cities? governance structures as each program grows.    3.4.2  Vancouver: CityPlan Community Visions Program The study draws on the Community Visions program because it is a municipal initiative that attempts to consult Vancouver?s many multicultural communities in an organized manner, neighbourhood by neighbourhood. Community Visions offers an example of what municipalities that are truly committed to multicultural representation can do to achieve their inclusivity goals. A brief overview and program analysis draw on Uyesugi and Shipley?s Community Visions study in 2005 where they interviewed 57 key informants, including city planners, city councillors, and community participants in the City of Vancouver (Uyesugi and Shipley, 2005). 3.4.2.1  How Does Community Visions Work? The Community Visions Program involves communities in neighbourhood level planning. The program is based on the CityPlan process, established in 1995, that included a city-wide public consultation process attended by over 10,000 community members (McAfee, course lecture, 2008). Community ?Visions? have been completed in eight of Vancouver?s neighbourhoods including Dunbar, Kensington-Cedar Cottage (the home of the MHHS), Sunset, Victoria-Fraserview/Killarney, Hastings-Sunrise, Renfrew Collingwood, Arbutus Ridge/Kerrisdale/Shaughnessy and Riley Park/South Cambie (CityPlan website, 2007). Each Vision contains policy directions on planning areas such as housing typology preferences, central Box 2. Lessons from abcGTA ??   Offer periodic professional training to participants. ??   Clearly articulate expectations of host organization involvement and include a mentorship guide. ??   Demonstrate early success: partnerships with agencies who share their vision. ??   Ally with champions within host organizations. ??   Recruit participants who share mission and vision of leadership. ??   Focus on systemic change.    20shopping areas, traffic and transportation flows, safety and amenities such as parks and daycare. The policy directions determined by each community are intended to guide City Council decisions over a 20-year period    (Uyesugi and Shipley 2005:307). Neighbourhood visions have been implemented to varying degrees. Nine areas that that were previously planned will be ?re-visioned? at a later date (http://www.city.vancouver.bc.ca/commsvcs/planning/cityplan/Visions/). Multicultural outreach is essential in many Vancouver communities, especially in neighbourhoods with high percentages of non-native English speakers such as Oakridge and Victoria where close to half of the population consists of native Chinese speakers (Statistics Canada, 2001). The City of Vancouver?s CityPlan department hires multicultural outreach workers who translate materials and target ethno-cultural groups through direct personal contact. This form of targeted outreach raises program costs significantly. At the same time, it demonstrates a commitment to ethno-cultural diversity and reinforces the notion of ?multiple, rather than a single, public interests? (Uyesugi and Shipley, 2005:313). 3.4.2.2  Community Visions Multicultural Outreach Techniques The varied Community Visions outreach techniques are summarized in Table 1. The majority of multicultural outreach methods involve media announcements in ethno-cultural publications and broadcasts. Significant resources are dedicated to Community Visions translation services as well. The table illustrates that translation is only one piece of the puzzle. Planners working on neighbourhood visions pursue relationships with ethno-cultural organizations and can thereby establish respect and personal commitment to multicultural processes.  Translation is a first step but is ultimately insufficient to inclusive multicultural policy implementation. You cannot simply translate material and expect people to show up: issues of power are always there and must be articulated and dealt with (Koeller, 2005:94). The City of Vancouver, through its staff?s competence and interest in multicultural planning, can begin to address the power imbalance, often considered to be inherent in city planning processes (Sandercock, 1998, 2003a, 2003b). As a point of comparison, the City of Richmond has the largest foreign-born population in Canada at 57.4% in 2006 (Statistics Canada, 2006). However, Richmond?s municipal government is not as strong as Vancouver with regard to ethno-cultural community consultation and could learn lessons from Vancouver. As one Maple Bamboo participant and resident of Richmond points out: Up until now, Richmond, the opportunity is not good. I analyzed that maybe Vancouver is more mature. Everything is developed. Maybe Richmond is developing slow. The public and the government not pay attention to such activity. You can compare the two different cities. Vancouver is quite developed and Richmond is very, very fast in developing. No time to discuss, no time to talk, no time to think (Maple Bamboo participant 01 interview, 2007). Uyesugi and Shipley elaborate on three interrelated components of a multicultural planning framework. First, references to specific ethno-cultural groups should be included in policy language. Second, diversity must be recognized and respected as important to planning processes. Third, multicultural planning requires a ?language of discourse.? Although Community Visions documentation is not entirely translated, summaries of the consultation results are translated into residents? mother languages. This straightforward planning exercise promotes transparency, validates non-English speaking residents? opinions and, according to Uyesugi and Shipley, is a ?conscious effort in the promotion of equity? (Uyesugi and Shipley, 2005:312). Uyesugi and Shipley elaborate on three interrelated components of a multicultural planning framework. First, references to specific ethno-cultural groups should be included in policy language. Second, diversity must be recognized and respected as important to planning processes. Third, multicultural planning requires a ?language of discourse.? Although Community Visions documentation is not entirely translated, summaries of the consultation results are translated into residents? mother languages. This straightforward planning exercise promotes     21Table 1. Community Visions Process and Multicultural Outreach Methods Step  Outreach Method  Participation Outcomes 1. Get in Touch  ??   Multilingual staff hired ??   Translated newsletters sent  ??   Advertisements in local ethno-cultural newspapers ??   Mailing and telephone follow-up to ethno-cultural organizations ??   In person Visioning presentations to ethno-cultural organizations ??   Outreach to immigrant communities: ??   # households, # non English newspapers, # contacts in organizations, # presentations to ethno-cultural organizations 2. Share Ideas  ??   Advertisements in newspapers ??   Multilingual workshops ??   Radio interviews on ethno-cultural programs ??   Multilingual flyers to businesses, community centres, etc. ??   Outcome: measures multicultural attendance ??   Conducts workshop in other languages 3. Choosing Directions   ??   Translated newsletters sent to all households  ??   Bilingual (Cantonese) survey ??   Multilingual survey announcements ??   Multilingual survey summaries ??   Survey outreach to ethno-cultural groups ??   Radio appearances ??   Outcome: measures number of households (% of non-English questionnaires returned) 4. Finalizing the Vision  ??   Vision highlights and survey results delivered in Cantonese to Chinese speaking households  ??   Multilingual referrals to help lines staffed by translators  ??   Measures number of households Source: Uyesugi and Shipley, 2005  transparency, validates non-English speaking residents? opinions and, according to Uyesugi and Shipley, is a ?conscious effort in the promotion of equity? (Uyesugi and Shipley, 2005:312). As the Maple Bamboo Initiative identifies other municipalities in Metro Vancouver to work with, it will be important to identify which regions are most amenable to diversity on their boards and committees. A commitment to truly inclusive public processes must go beyond written policies, such as the Community Visions case example. It is the actions of municipal staff and appointed committee members that can make tangible changes in representation and decision-making processes. 3.5  The Role of Targets in Achieving Representation  I've seen too many boards of directors ? for public and private organizations that serve immigrants ? without a single ethnic minority on them.                                                                 (Scherbina, Think City Minute, 2007) The Maple Bamboo project proactively empowers immigrants who can influence the composition of boards, committees and non-profit agencies. The gap identified by Scherbina, quoted above, leads to an examination of mechanisms that change the diversity of actors involved in decision-making, in both formal and informal forums.      22Targets are a critical component in addressing the diversity gap and ensuring that institutional commitments are made, in concrete terms, to multicultural representation. Targets are controversial by nature. In the U.S., outright rejection of affirmative action requirements that obligate employers to give preference to some groups over others has been widely documented. However, quantitative targets have been successful in impacting institutional change in places such as the UK, that have recently made public commitments to proportional representation of ethnic minorities on government-sponsored boards. To meet these targets, the government establishes and measures both quantitative objectives and qualitative plans for change (Teitelbaum, 2007). Quantitative benchmarks are significant as they effectively measure progress over time. Without an organizational commitment to diversity as well as tracking tools in place, inclusivity in public appointments, boards of directors and working committees is largely rhetorical. Establishing targets signals that equitable representation is a priority practice in the appointments process- one that is to be measured, tracked and publicly reported (Teitelbaum, 2007:10).  De Freitas points to challenges to institutional progress in this regard:  It is difficult for people to admit they are "diversity-challenged" and to move beyond the simple acknowledgment of the diversity deficiency to producing actual results but if you do not identify the problem and set targets, nothing will get achieved (Paul de Freitas, 2003:8). I emphasize the role of targets in this section to foreshadow the Maple Bamboo case study that follows. At present, it is unlikely that many organizations utilize quantitative measurement to track their commitments to and successes in diversity. Based on information from host agencies, no formal mechanisms are in place to ensure widespread multicultural representation on their boards. In fact, when asked how many board members (volunteer or appointed) were from immigrant communities, all respondents estimated their reply. Although the interview sample was small, it gives a probable indication that there is much work to be done in the area of targets. As the Maple Bamboo project evolves, it will likely be confronted with the challenge of securing permanent spaces for immigrant voices to be heard in Canadian public processes.        23 4  The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s Possibilities and Prospects 4.1   Introduction This chapter first outlines the objectives of the Maple Bamboo (MB) Initiative. A brief description of the case study then explains the pilot project?s format, illuminating how the project has met some, but not all, of its objectives. A review of the advisory committee?s role is followed by a proposed expansion that can lead the MB toward meeting its medium and long-term objectives. Next, the chapter introduces qualitative interview findings from MB participants and host agencies that inform the identification of strengths and ongoing challenges to capacity building. A progress report of the pilot project concludes the chapter.  4.2   The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s Objectives and Goals The Multicultural Helping House Society serves as a one-stop centre for temporary housing, employment training, mentoring, counseling services and resource information for newcomers. Recently, MHHS has focused on capacity building techniques for the immigrant communities it serves. It is in the spirit of capacity building that the Maple Bamboo Initiative was conceived. As one participant explains: In general I think it?s a really good idea, especially with new immigrants that they have to be involved at some point, in some way. They can?t just rule everything out and just be here without knowing anything. You can?t live like that (MB participant 04 interview, 2007). The Maple Bamboo Initiative was developed as a twelve-month pilot project. In all, 59 immigrants were trained in May and June of 2007 and completed their public participation immersion processes six months later, in December 2007. Within this short timeframe, the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s staff set out to achieve short-term goals. If successful in meeting their objectives, the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s civic participation outcomes can have resounding medium and long-term impacts on multiculturalism in civic processes in Metro Vancouver. The Initiative?s objectives, as stated in the project proposal, are as follows: ??   Seek to create a strategy to encourage newcomers to be curious and informed of public issues and concerns such as racism and to improve their confidence and become empowered to advocate for their own concerns and address these concerns by participating in group or community processes. Creating the strategy is in itself participatory and empowering.  ??   Focus on promoting and making visible the full and active participation of growing and emerging immigrant communities such as the African, Bangladeshi, Chinese, Filipino, Hispanic, Korean and Vietnamese communities. ??   Bring partnerships, with some commitments already received, from academe, other immigrant servicing organizations, public and civic organizations from the cities that will provide both scholarship and leadership in identifying and in helping break the barriers that hinder involvement of newcomers, and in effecting institutional changes that support immigrant integration in civic processes. Imbedded in each of the Maple Bamboo?s stated objectives are short, medium and long- term goals, some of which cannot be accomplished within the timeframe of the pilot project. For instance, the first objective encapsulates an evolving process. New immigrants? empowerment gained as they engage in strategic participation through Maple Bamboo training and public process involvement is a short-term, realizable goal. The curiosity and confidence that ensue can be seen as a medium-term goal if training, placement and leadership opportunities inspire consistent participant engagement beyond the program?s timeframe. Participants? abilities to    24advocate for their own concerns are achieved in both the short and long-term, depending on the type of community engagement process. The overarching twin goals of the Maple Bamboo Initiative can be summarized as follows:   ??   Facilitating the interaction and engagement of Canadian newcomers through hands-on experience in Canadian civic participation and  ??   Strengthening Canadian civic processes and public decision-making through the active integration of immigrants.  The project has the dual purpose of generating and sustaining new immigrants? engagement as well as building and maintaining support and partnerships from host agencies. One Maple Bamboo participant expressed his belief in the benefits of the program for all involved: ?I believe this program in the future must succeed. Because everything is good. And the government needs, the society needs and new immigrants need (programs like these)? (MB participant 01 interview, 2007). 4.3  Case Study Description The Maple Bamboo Initiative focuses on new immigrants? public involvement in Canadian pubic processes through training and ongoing support. It thereby serves to build capacity for new immigrants? integration into mainstream organizations and for cross-cultural information exchange between participants and host agencies and amongst participants themselves.  The image that the project?s title invokes is deeply symbolic. It is said that maple bamboo bats have a tensile strength greater than steel and perform well in hot and cold weather. The terms are used to evoke the coming together of Canadian public processes, symbolized by the maple leaf, and new Canadian immigrants, most of whom have recently arrived from Asia, home of the bamboo plant (Guerrero-Campbell, 2006: 2). Just as the bat is reinforced by the combination of both materials, so too can Canadian public processes that include immigrants be strengthened. The image of maple and bamboo joined implies the potential resilience of a truly multicultural Canada (see Figure 4).   The Maple Bamboo Initiative is comprised of six main activity areas, discussed in more detail henceforth. They include: 1) a pilot project advisory council; 2) a series of focus group discussions with leaders of seven emerging immigrant communities; 3) the development of the Maple Bamboo training format, workshop and materials; 4) five weekend training sessions; 5) participant placements with host agencies; and 6) reports and evaluation.    All activities are anchored by two perspectives: 1) that new immigrants possess the capacity and potential to positively contribute to the cultural, social, economic and political aspects of Canadian society; and 2) that Canadian society and its institutions continuously seek ways to create a welcoming environment for new immigrants and to integrate new Canadians (Guerrero-Campbell, 2006:2). The Maple Bamboo Initiative evolved out of a solid belief in immigrants? potential to profoundly influence Canadian public processes. Through civic engagement, their diverse perspectives and life experiences contribute to representative and inclusive decisions that are applicable to a wider Canadian public.  Figure 4. Maple Bamboo Logo  Source: Maple Bamboo Brochure, 2007    254.4  Maple Bamboo Advisory Council The Maple Bamboo Advisory Council is composed of members of academia, a social policy research group, directors from other immigrant settlement service agencies, media representatives and one host agency. The advisory group assists greatly in setting the strategic goals of MB. It is also instrumental in considering how the project can expand and evolve in a more sustainable manner. The MB Advisory Council serves as a feedback loop for Maple Bamboo staff to report accomplishments and identify barriers to reaching its goals.  The MB Advisory Council?s responsibilities must develop to reflect the parallel sustainable growth of the pilot project. It is crucial that immigrant services agencies and academics bring the theoretical and practical frameworks to most effectively support new immigrants? civic engagement. It is also vital that host agencies contribute as advisory council members to the Maple Bamboo project?s direction. Host agency members serving as advisory council members can directly address new immigrant participation from the perspective of mainstream agencies. In this regard, a next step can be to expand the advisory council?s membership. Subcommittees or working groups on topic areas that require specialized attention are needed. For example, media representatives can work with host agency representatives to develop a communications strategy to draw in more MB host agencies. Immigrant services directors can continue to work with MB staff on recruitment and placement of MB participants on municipal multicultural advisory groups. Host agencies and immigrant services representatives can join forces to identify public process opportunities in to which MB participants can be networked.  4.5  Maple Bamboo Participants  In 2007, seven immigrant communities were recruited for participation in the Maple Bamboo project including African, Bangladeshi, Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Latino and Vietnamese immigrants. The specificity of immigrant groups recruited relates to a historical under-representation of these groups in local public processes. The seven immigrant groups? populations are also growing in Metro Vancouver but many lack political power and organization (MBI focus groups, 2007). The MHHS sought to address this apparent lack through targeted recruitment of 60 participants from emerging immigrant communities across Metro Vancouver. 4.5.1  Eligibility The selection criteria for Maple Bamboo participants are straightforward. Participants must have a keen interest in civic process participation, either through past experience in their home countries or a willingness to learn about Canadian opportunities. They must also possess at least an intermediate level of English (both spoken and written) to be eligible. Finally, participants must be able and willing to commit two to three hours of volunteer time per month for three to six months in their choice of public process(es). The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s project coordinator also conducts personal or phone interviews to ensure quality control of applicants (see Appendix B for Maple Bamboo application).  4.5.2  Recruitment of Training Participants The Maple Bamboo staff accessed many ethnic community and media sources to recruit participants. Staff also networked with various host agencies to plant the idea of a mutually beneficial relationship between Maple Bamboo trainees and their host placements. Focus groups comprised of ethnic community leaders provided valuable information about the challenges to public participation faced by their communities. Some of the challenges such as language ability and lack of confidence were shared by almost all of the groups while others were shared by only a few. For example, the Hispanic and African focus group participants emphasized that Latin Americans come from 20 different countries where the primary common denominator is language, while Africans have broad representation from over 30 countries and cultures where language is not necessarily common to all (MBI focus group discussions, 2007). 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MB parning sessions11Did not answer14MaleFema  2pants. Figure ticipants opte5 years, whicle to volunteen many cases young peopd employmenanizations thanicities. Filipinwell establishember any otheore likely to b rticipants mads gave severeale276 ed ch er s, le nt. at no ed er be de al    28opportunities for role-playing in mock sessions (see Table 2 and Appendix F for a detailed agenda).  4.6.1  Training Format Reference materials on political processes and governance were also distributed to each participant. Guest speakers from host agencies and local governments were invited to give presentations on opportunities available in their organizations. MB principle trainers are public process experts, one of whom has been working in planning and public participation for over two decades. The MB training program used informal language to explain formal subjects. Trainers were wary of using intimidating language. Participants might experience miscommunication if the trainers used overly technical language to explain key concepts. Instead, they broke down highly organized mechanisms in to manageable components and then imparted how to use those mechanisms to gain access to public processes. The MB trainers? overarching goal was to empower immigrants through the dissemination of Canadian governance and civic participation information. The training(s) balanced context with content and interactive sessions were used to put the lecture material in to practice. One Maple Bamboo participant particularly enjoyed the interactive sessions: ?I like the explanation of how things work. Mock sessions on how to plan and prepare your ideas. And to not forget to have all your facts to back up what you?re saying. You get the whole picture of how things go? (MB participant 03 interview, 2007). A Filipina and full-time mother of five described her involvement with the school board and district advisory committee. She mentioned that the most difficult part [of the MB program] is the transition from putting what is learned in training into practice. The Maple Bamboo training provides a good overall foundation from which new immigrant participants can launch their Canadian civic engagement activities. Much is still to be learned beyond the training but the weekend sessions provide the tools so that participants feel confident to move ahead.  Table 2. Maple Bamboo Initiative Training Curriculum Day 1 ??   All About Governance:  Federal, Provincial, Municipal Government & NGOs: Information given on the structure of all levels of government and the role of the non governmental organizational sector. Different Ways to Get Involved: Formal, semiformal, informal: Information given on various contexts of public engagement. What Maple Bamboo Trainees Need to Know: Information given on presentation tips, rules of conduct, Robert?s Rules of Order and advocacy.  ??   Practical Exercises and Presentations: Participants develop council recommendations and advocacy strategies in mock public participation sessions. Day 2 ??   Host Agency Presentations: Information provided by host agencies about their mandates and opportunities for Maple Bamboo participant involvement. ??   Practical Exercises and Presentations: Participants prepare and enact public process scenarios such as a mock public presentation to the BC Standing Committee on Economic Development ??   Maple Bamboo Forum Blog: Information on the ongoing on-line communication tool that was set up for participants. ??   Next Steps: Information on how to pursue public involvement after the training. ??   Evaluation: Participants fill out evaluations to give feedback to Maple Bamboo staff on the training format and agenda. Source: Maple Bamboo training package, 2007     29Maple Bamboo trainers believe that the essential training ingredient is the tools that trainees acquire for civic engagement. Procedures on how to contribute in formal public forums, mock committee meetings on neighbourhood issues, how to confront discrimination and how to speak effectively at public meetings are tools that MB participants are presented with in the training.  4.6.2  Training Evaluation At the end of each session, Maple Bamboo trainees were asked to complete an evaluation form. Generally, the training satisfaction levels were very high during the spring 2007 sessions. Suggestions for training improvement from MB participants included: ??   Provide pre-training materials; ??   Extend training beyond two days; ??   Administer a pre-training questionnaire re: trainees? expectations of training outcomes; ??   Screen the trainees to ensure they meet the eligibility requirements; ??   Invite more diverse guest speakers (from different professional backgrounds); ??   Collate a list of host agencies and include contact and agency?s mandate information; ??   Coordinate field trips to city council proceedings; and  ??   Tell success stories of immigrant involvement in Canadian public processes. Over the course of the training sessions in May and June 2007, some of these suggestions were incorporated. Based on evaluation responses, trainees indicated that they would like to see program continuity. For example, pre-training materials can give participants a sense of familiarity with the subject matter. A pre-training survey can assure trainees that the information provided will be relevant to their interests. Finally, connections to speakers and host agencies aid in the transition discussed above between training and real world practice.   4.7  Maple Bamboo Pilot Project Participant Interview Findings   Our logic has no accent.        (Maple Bamboo participant 02 interview, 2007) Four Maple Bamboo participants were interviewed for this study (see Appendix A for interview schedule). The Maple Bamboo project coordinator recommended actively involved MB trainees to be interviewed. Interviews were drawn on to develop recommendations in chapter 5. However, the sample was not random and does indicate a bias. Although the sample is not representative of the typical Maple Bamboo participant?s experience, those interviewed do represent the types of trainees who may be future leaders in the program.  Participant interviews were granted by three men and one woman, all from different ethno-cultural backgrounds: Chinese, Tawainese, Bangladeshi and Hispanic. The amount of time the interviewees have been in Canada ranged from one to eight years. Interviews were also sought with less active participants but were not granted for a number of reasons including participant?s change of circumstance, no reply to the investigator?s communiqu? and hesitance to be interviewed due to lack of experience. In the following section, I discuss six findings that emerged from four Maple Bamboo participant interviews.  4.7.1  There are differences between public involvement in Canada and back home. Obviously, the nature of the difference between public involvement in Canada and the home country depends on where the MB participant is from. In one interview, it was noted that the two countries are almost polar opposites in their approach to civic engagement. ?You know, in my country it?s way, way difficult to really get involved. The process is completely different. They don?t    30ask. If they want to put a road or something they just do it and that?s it. So obviously the process is completely different? (MB participant interview, 2007). In China it is unheard of, according to one interviewee, to participate in government decisions at any level. This responsibility is held by an elite few and public opinion is not sought. His reflection on his home country as opposed to opportunities for Canadian civic engagement is telling: Most Canadians have good challenge to show their idea to the public; to the government. What they like or what they don?t like. This very impress me a lot because in China maybe, especially the city plan, only depend on several persons, several maybe very, very skilled persons. But just now, I think it?s not enough because the society is the people?s society not several persons? (MB participant 01 interview, 2007).   Another interviewee points to the more subtle differences in the two countries? approaches to public participation: The culture that we follow back home for the public processes, in some cases they are formal but most of the time we could not maintain the formal atmosphere, it becomes informal within ten minutes or so. But here when it is formal, it is formal. That?s one of the things I got some idea about in the MB Initiative how you can, when it is informal meeting, a person if he can talk good he can capture the audience because he can just ignore what other people are saying and people will listen to him. But in formal meetings you really need some skills to capture the audience if you don?t want to lose them (MB participant 03 interview, 2007).   Participants? responses illustrate the varied backgrounds from which they come and what might be potential obstacles to engagement in Canada. Lived experience under authoritarian regimes and concomitant internalized perceptions regarding powerlessness in government processes are real barriers to immigrant involvement in Canada. Through the Maple Bamboo Initiative, participants not only reflect on how different Canadian processes function, they also gain access to civic engagement opportunities, an unimaginable concept in many of their countries of origin.  4.7.2  Maple Bamboo volunteers bring unique experience and knowledge.  Throughout the interviews, I spoke with an engineer, a journalist, a university level science professor and a financial manager. Highly skilled with years of experience in their home countries, Maple Bamboo participants can also bring new perspectives to public processes as they often see issues through multiple cultural lenses. This can be a considerable asset to host agencies and public engagement processes where decisions can benefit from international immigrant perspectives. New immigrants are often eager to get established and get involved in their new society. As one participant points out, they may bring more than skills and experience: ?When they are coming to Canada, they are coming with some sort of hope, with some sort of confidence that they will get a job here, that they?ll be settled in within three years and they can contribute to the processes of the country? (Maple Bamboo Participant 03 interview, 2007). The ?bridge? concept emerged twice in talking with participants who viewed themselves with the ability to bridge between the two cultures. One participant was excited by the role she could play, especially where she can bring increased visibility to her community. ?If I can be a bridge between the two departments, that would be terrific. At least I think I can reveal something for the weaker group. It?s very much like a journalist?s job. You reveal or you can get the access to have the weaker group?s voices revealed? (Maple Bamboo Participant 02 interview, 2007). Another crucial outcome of new immigrants? public involvement is that voices are heard that are often overlooked because no one is at the decision-making table to represent them.    31Maple Bamboo participants? experience and knowledge are unique. Future immigrant participation can eventuate from current participants? public involvement. As one participant explained: ?We can all bring our experiences to this initiative to a platform?it will help us as well as the immigrants that will come later? (Maple Bamboo Participant 03 interview, 2007). 4.7.3  The Maple Bamboo Initiative positively impacts trainees? confidence, networking potential and professional skill building. The Maple Bamboo training offers initial networking through its guest speakers. Mock sessions and group presentations during the training challenge participants to test their English language proficiency, public speaking skills and overall confidence in public presentations. Many participants point out that these skills are not only useful for public involvement but are also quite practical in terms of professional development. Although professional development is not a primary objective of the MB Project, it is an added incentive for new immigrants to get involved in the program. The Maple Bamboo training also introduces frameworks for Canadian governance, politics, planning and community participation that would be difficult to navigate on one?s own. A participant who had been very active in his home country discusses his challenges to getting involved independently here: I never got an opportunity to get involved with any process because I could have done that but the energy that it requires. I was not free enough to find out the place where I can go to get involved and when I heard about the Maple Bamboo, it was a good point to start because within two days we got introduced to several people and processes and community centres and the networking organizations. So it was an opportunity for me to get involved without spending too much time, which I cannot afford while working from my home office (Maple Bamboo participant 03 interview, 2007). Maple Bamboo participants also gain confidence in how procedures and formal structures work in Canada. This is true in both the civic engagement and professional realms. As one participant remarked: Before I noticed the program, a professional company for me is difficult to contact but after that (the training) I can judge the Canadian company, Canadian professional company. I will know what do they think about, how I can contribute. I can express my idea. I can express my knowledge. So I can find a suitable job?suitable for my knowledge and language and my background (Maple Bamboo participant 01 interview, 2007). The Maple Bamboo Initiative inspires some of its trainees to challenge themselves. In so doing, those participants whom I interviewed feel well prepared for public process engagement. Many trainees may enter the program with a predisposition for active involvement in their communities. The Maple Bamboo training gives them the tools they need to step forward and participate with confidence.  4.7.4  Additional training time is necessary and the timeline for participants? civic participation should be extended. The Maple Bamboo training takes place over one weekend. These two full days of training are offered with little opportunity for further training as the project?s timeline proceeds. Interviews with Maple Bamboo participants indicate that more training time is desired. One trainee addresses the conundrum of scheduling additional training in this way: ?I know it?s difficult to have an extra day of training. But you need more time. A lot of things were cut short and they had to move to the next things. Probably three days but again it would have to be on a weekend. And it?s not a good thing to dedicate two weekends. But definitely some topics or subjects, for me, there needs to be    32more time. Not just an overview? (Maple Bamboo Participant 04 interview, 2007). Training evaluations suggest participants? desire to access more training material before and after the training?s completion as well.  Participants and host agencies emphasize the need for more time in general for the Maple Bamboo Initiative to gain momentum. It is common knowledge that planning processes and school board related activities, among others, are particularly slow during the summer months. Within such a short timeframe, it is difficult for some participants to find a public process that suits them. One man was unclear about his host agency?s level of commitment:  As far as I know there were some agencies that they hadn?t really decided. They wanted to wait a little longer but you know, time is going by and I think it won?t be long before December (2007). It?s only a few months so there may not be enough time to really get started. You may be starting and they say, ?ok that?s it? (Maple Bamboo Participant 04 interview, 2007). The program?s timeline is a critical variable that interviewees commented on repeatedly. Many of the people interviewed attended public forums after they completed the training, almost immediately. The momentum gained from training materials and practice mock sessions was not lost on them. However, other trainees are likely to need more time to find an organization to work with or initiate themselves into public forums.  4.7.5  Additional opportunities for training and group meetings should be offered. All interviewees stated that they would like the opportunity to meet with other Maple Bamboo participants throughout the program. The MB trainees are introduced to their small training group of nine to fifteen people but do not have the opportunity, in a formal way, to share their experiences and exchange information with the larger group. This weakness has partly been addressed through a newly formed Maple Bamboo Club. Integrating interim training and participant meetings in to the next Maple Bamboo project timeline was also suggested. 4.7.6  The host agency role in the program needs to be developed. One of the four MB trainees interviewed was formally associated with a host agency. Since the time of the interviews, many more participants have been placed (see section 4.11 for a project update). Maple Bamboo staff are effectively communicating at public forums and events in Metro Vancouver. Formal relationships with host agencies are not well established with the exception of a few. This makes it difficult for participants to be involved consistently with an organization on an issue of particular interest.  Maple Bamboo participant placements with host agencies are central to the long-term vision of the program; these placements will serve to introduce participants to leadership positions in the community. Although robust working relationships with a few committed host agencies have been established, there is a need for a pool of agencies with the capacity to incorporate Maple Bamboo participants in to their work. One participant suggests that less is more: ?I?d rather have less agencies but they?re really supportive with the idea. Rather than having thousands, but really there?s only a short list of ten that can or want or could take the trainees in to their agencies? (Maple Bamboo Participant 04 interview, 2007). MB trainees are also interested in clearly defined duties and tasks required by host agencies. For example, one trainee who is working with a professional foreign credential advocacy organization proposes that a work plan with clearly stated responsibilities would be a helpful and organized method of formalizing the reciprocal relationship between agency and volunteer.    334.8  Summary of Participant Interview Findings Many variables must be examined for the Maple Bamboo Initiative to achieve results in new immigrant participation in public processes. The interviews show that some aspects of the program are quite beneficial to trainees such as skill building, networking and overall confidence levels. There are other aspects that need improvement such as the timeframe of the project and MB volunteer host agency placements. Through this qualitative research study, the program?s strengths are identified, the fundamental objectives from whence the project originates are evaluated and the areas in need of development are brought to light providing a framework to extend the program in to the future.          As stated earlier, this study is limited by the small number of interviews conducted. Further research into immigrant civic participation is needed, particularly if programs such as the Maple Bamboo project continue to gain momentum in Metro Vancouver and across Canada. In order to validate my initial interview findings, it would be useful to use a wider sample of MB participants. Opportunities for further research will emerge as the Maple Bamboo Project is likely to be extended. It will be useful to track the project?s progress through participants? firsthand experience over time.   4.9  Maple Bamboo Pilot Project Host Agency Interview Findings Their perspective as new immigrants is beneficial. I have been here 40 years for example. After 40 years, I am more Canadian than the country of my birth. The Maple Bamboo volunteers would have a different perspective that would come more from their country of origin. They may speak up and shed light on issues that the committee may not be aware of. Many committee members have learned to live with the barriers and have learned to ignore them (Maple Bamboo host agency representative 03 interview, 2007). Maple Bamboo participants can bridge cultures and interpret issues through multiple cultural lenses: Four Maple Bamboo host agencies were selected for interviews (see Appendix A for interview schedule). Agencies interviewed represent a good cross-section of volunteer opportunities for MB participants. One community-based non-profit organization, one fully volunteer-run and led organization, one municipal committee and one municipal advisory committee with a provincial mandate were selected. Two agencies are already hosts to MB volunteers. One agency was not able to host at the time of the interview because of the City of Vancouver strike. The other agency?s representative saw his committee?s role as more of a conduit to other organizations. Two agencies are located in Richmond and two are located in Vancouver, where the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s engagement efforts are concentrated. Three of the four host agencies stated that about half of their organizational leaders (either board or Box 3. Maple Bamboo Participant Interview Findings: ??   There are significant differences between public involvement in Canada and in their home countries. ??   Maple Bamboo volunteers bring unique experience and knowledge to Canadian public processes. ??   The Maple Bamboo Initiative positively impacts trainees? confidence, networking potential and professional skill building. ??   The timeline for participants? civic participation should be extended and additional training time is needed. ??   Additional opportunities for training and group meetings should be offered. ??   The host agency role in the program needs to be developed.    34committee members) are immigrants. These interviews reinforced the participant interview finding that the host agencies? role in the program needs to be further developed. Below, I highlight eight findings from Maple Bamboo host agency interviews. 4.9.1  The Maple Bamboo Initiative will benefit from a communications strategy. The MB project?s messaging can be unclear to agencies unfamiliar with the program. The Maple Bamboo title?s symbolism holds deep significance discussed in section 4.3. However, the title is not easily interpreted at face value. The byline reads ?Training Newcomers in Public Processes.? One respondent stated: ?I looked at this and said, ?I?ve never heard of Maple Bamboo.? I thought, ?what?s this all about?? If you said to host agency contacts, ?It?s a program to integrate immigrants into our society through involvement in municipal organizations, as opposed to just saying Maple Bamboo.? At first glance, it doesn?t say what you are? (Maple Bamboo host agency representative 04 interview, 2007). A clear byline, targeted to host agencies and the benefits they reap from participating in the project, in easily understood, concise language, will likely increase visibility, support and recognition of the project by mainstream organizations.  Just as Maple Bamboo participants benefit from professional development, skill building and increased confidence in public processes, so too can agencies benefit from hosting a volunteer. Boards receive free assistance from MB volunteers and access communities that they may not otherwise have access to. The Maple Bamboo Initiative will benefit from developing a communications strategy that effectively markets the program to a target audience of mainstream host agencies.    4.9.2  Ongoing funding for the program is needed. The Maple Bamboo project?s goals and objectives are ambitious. Interview responses indicate that additional programming, communication, volunteer support and host agency partnerships are necessary for the program?s development and sustainability. In order to augment these components, more funding is needed to reach the project?s longer-term goals. One host agency representative indicates that it is precarious to rely on outside funding only and that the program should consider how to generate funds internally. The MB project?s impacts can be significant and far-reaching if external funding is supplemented by self-sustaining internal financial sources.  4.9.3  Agency partnerships can strengthen the project?s long-term sustainability. Formalizing relationships between supportive host agencies and the project?s sponsor, MHHS, can enhance the project?s reach. Partnership development also takes host agency commitment to the next level and can bring agencies that are actively involved in the Maple Bamboo program to the advisory council table as discussed in section 4.4. One host agency representative states simply: ?My guess, from a funder perspective, is that they like partnerships and more of a consortia? ? (Maple Bamboo host agency representative 02 interview, 2007). Strategic planning with contributions from partner agencies brings another dimension to the project and appeals to funders.  4.9.4  The project timeline should be extended. The timeline of the project is challenging to host agencies for a number of reasons. First, when an agency?s board meets only once a month, a six-month placement is not enough time for volunteers to learn the fundamentals. Second, host agencies will likely hesitate to invest energy on work plans and MB participant support if the placement is going to be quite limited. ?I think there?s got to be a balance of how much, from our perspective, we invest in going over expectations and all that kind of stuff if it?s for such a short time. I don?t know if there?s anything that can be done about that but if you could sustain the project somehow for a longer period of    35time? (MB host agency representative 02 interview, 2007). Third, in the broader context, many planning processes and civic issues that require public involvement take a long time to get underway. Particularly in circumstances where there are many stakeholder interests at hand, it can take six months just to get a basic understanding of the issues to be addressed.  With this in mind, one respondent suggests, ?it?s really important that they set it up so [the volunteers feel that] they are contributing and are feeling like they are understanding the process? (MB host agency representative 02 interview, 2007). 4.9.5  One part-time staff person cannot coordinate everything. Staff capacity was limited considering that there was one part-time staff position. The project coordinator managed 60 new immigrants? volunteer training, s/he organized focus groups in the seven emerging immigrant communities, s/he submitted quarterly reports to the funder, s/he handled media inquiries and publicity for the program and developed relationships with potential Maple Bamboo host agencies. As one interviewee pointed out, ?After we?ve done the training we have to do something to facilitate their own [participants] mutual support so that they?re not just always looking to the coordinator because that won?t work? (MB host agency representative 01 interview, 2007). In other words, to alleviate the workload of the part-time staff person, the project can create support structures internally that are self-sustaining. 4.9.6  Maple Bamboo volunteers must be a ?good fit? with host agencies. The Maple Bamboo volunteer placement is a reciprocal relationship between host agency and participant and should be mutually beneficial to both parties. Host agencies can benefit from MB participants skills if they are well matched to the needs of the organization. A passion for the agency?s work and the motivation to get involved are foremost in a ?good fit? arrangement. General skills such as public speaking and interpersonal communication are also assets. A match is easily accomplished if volunteers and host agencies have an idea of what they are looking for in advance. Matching participants? skill sets and interests to host agencies? volunteer opportunities and organizational needs can be achieved through various means. During the initial interview and screening process a review of the applicants? education, work experience and extracurricular interests in addition to a staff evaluation through observation and participants? own self-assessment during training can provide a comprehensive skills assessment to facilitate appropriate matches. In some cases, volunteers will serve in a purely observational role. Expectations for both volunteers and agencies should be clear. Broad host agency needs assessments specific to their agency?s gaps and challenges provide valuable information about the key roles that volunteers can fill.  In the abcGTA example, applicants bring professional skills and experience such as accounting, legal expertise, graphic design and computer technology skills in addition to the ability to ?bridge? between cultures. abcGTA participants quickly become integral assets to the agencies, boards and committees that they volunteer for. In fact, abcGTA?s process of matching applicants to agencies, boards and commissions accomplishes the dual purpose of strengthening ties with host organizations thereby increasing visibility and community-wide support for the program as well as placing experienced professionals in positions that can lead them to hold decision-making authority. The MB program has participants with a variety of experience and capacity to dive into their volunteer work. Questionnaires or volunteer applications administered by host agencies can evaluate the best placement for an MB volunteer within their particular organizational structure. In some cases, exposure and enthusiasm to learn are the leading motivators for participants to get involved in an issue important to them.     36It is important that host agencies are prepared to integrate Maple Bamboo participants in their organization expeditiously so that volunteers, equipped with new information and energy to contribute, can ?hit the ground running.? 4.9.7  Support should be provided to participants throughout the program. Support generated from participants themselves is the most cost-effective way to ensure that participants stay connected and involved throughout the program. An attempt was made to start a Maple Bamboo blog but it is seldom used. Maple Bamboo staff cannot personally support all 60 trainees on an individual basis. However, forums for sharing experiences serve as periodic group meetings and additional training opportunities. One host agency representative made the following suggestion on breaking into subgroups: ?So, 60 of them splitting into groups of six each and those subgroups, you demand that they meet on a regular basis or you provide them with certain kinds of communication tools and structure so they report back to the group? (MB host agency representative 01 interview, 2007). This ensures that there is a certain expectation for ongoing participation in the program beyond the two-day training. Subgroup meetings are an opportunity for participants to get to know each other on a more informal basis and continue a collaborative learning process of immigrant experiences in Canadian civic engagement. One host agency representative emphasized that volunteers need to be supported enough through the Initiative so that they do not rely too heavily on the host agency for support. Many host agencies struggle with time and resource limitations and can thus offer a trainee only basic guidance in their role as a volunteer board member, committee member or advisory council member (Maple Bamboo host agency 02 interview, 2007).  4.9.8  Outcomes and assessments tell a powerful story. Two host agency representatives suggested ideas on how to effectively communicate program outcomes to funders and other interested parties. First, a skill based evaluation where certain skill sets can be mastered by participants and serve as benchmarks for further program development was offered. The participant is assessed at the beginning of the program, at a midway point and at program completion to show improvement in specific areas. Thus, measurable results prove the benefits of the training and placement programs. Second, qualitative case studies of participants? stories were suggested as a way to illustrate new immigrant civic engagement processes from start to finish.  4.10  Summary of Host Agency Interview Findings There are many variables to consider in integrating host agencies into the Maple Bamboo Initiative. A strategy that effectively communicates the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s goals will aid in agency recruitment. Timing poses a significant challenge as very little can be accomplished at host agencies in six months. Maple Bamboo?s staff can develop partnerships with outside agencies to strengthen the program?s mandate and extend its reach. MB volunteers offer a great resource to host agencies if they are well matched according to their skills and enthusiasm. Support mechanisms must be implemented so that participants have a place to find reinforcement and ongoing training as needed. Finally, documentation of outcomes serves as proof of the program?s impacts on participants. Their stories are compelling and should be adequately captured in various forms, from reports to films and other multi-media formats.       37Box 4. Maple Bamboo Host Agency Interview Findings: ??   The Maple Bamboo Initiative will benefit from a targeted communications strategy. ??   Ongoing funding for the program is needed. ??   Agency partnerships can strengthen the project?s long-term sustainability. ??   The project timeline should be reconsidered and extended. ??   One part time staff person can not coordinate everything. ??   Maple Bamboo volunteers must be a ?good fit? with host agencies. ??   Support should be provided to participants throughout the program. ??   Outcomes and assessments tell a powerful story. 4.11 Maple Bamboo Progress Report In terms of the MB project?s goals, we see notable progress in Canadian newcomer engagement through hands-on experience. The MB training indeed equips new immigrants with the tools and background required to contribute to public processes in an informed and productive manner. Brock?s idea of an active multiculturalism (Brock, 2006:5) is inherent in the Maple Bamboo Project?s goals and objectives, conceptualized on the basis of active immigrant engagement with the host society. Since September 2007, the Maple Bamboo project staff members advertised 28 new volunteer positions in nine host agencies for MB participants. In all, 21 trainees were connected with seven new host agencies by late October 2007. Public forum and consultations continued to offer frequent opportunities for public involvement through December 2007. For example, in October 2007, five Maple Bamboo volunteers took minutes and contributed to community facilitation at a Vancouver citywide planning conference entitled ?Dream Vancouver: Your City, Your Ideas, Our Future.? The Maple Bamboo Club was also formed in October 2007 and invited participants to share their experiences and get to know each other while providing each other with mutual support (Jin, pers. comm., 2007). The timing of the pilot projects? volunteer placements, from June ? December 2007, was less than ideal. Participants completed their training just as summer started in mid-June. Many municipal agencies slow down during the summer months due to vacations. MB had the particularly difficult situation of a 12-week municipal strike in the City of Vancouver that halted progress on host agency placements. As noted above, many successful placements and volunteer opportunities came up in autumn. In the future, the cyclical nature of organizational needs can be integrated into MB program planning.     385  Challenges to Project Viability: Beyond a Pilot Project 5.1  Program Strengths The Maple Bamboo Initiative has strengths to be built upon if the program expands in the future. Its knowledgeable Director and diverse, supportive advisory council reinforce the program?s goals and objectives and set directions that can have wider reaching influence. Its advisory council draws from all sectors including academic, private and non-profit, which points to the multidisciplinary and multi-sectoral nature of its mandate. Training newcomers in public involvement can attract buy-in from a wide cross-section of organizations, government and the general public.    The MB?s publicity in various immigrant communities was extremely effective in recruiting a diverse applicant pool. Outreach techniques directed at ethno-culturally specific radio programs, newspapers and community activities recruited participants who brought skills and diverse experiences to the training and their civic engagement work.  Participants? abilities to bridge between cultures and communicate transferable knowledge of how participation works in mainstream Canadian culture are program strengths. As cultural bridges, participants can contribute to mainstream public processes and bring perspectives that would otherwise be absent. For example, in discussions of sustainable development and eco-density; two hot topics in the City of Vancouver, Maple Bamboo participants who engage in community discussions can better translate the principles behind the sustainability and eco-density concepts to their communities in languages and metaphors that are culturally relevant. The ability to bridge is a significant asset of the program. The early success of participant-host agency matches sets a precedent for future program expansion. Some host agency representatives commented that their work was reinvigorated by the energy and insights of Maple Bamboo participants. Those participants, applying skills learned in training to their civic engagement activities, are ideal candidates to train future MB candidates. A small pool of trained future trainers who have firsthand experience of public processes is a substantial resource that has come out of the pilot project.      The MB coordinators initiated relationships with host agencies outside of Vancouver and Richmond. Expansion to other municipalities such as Burnaby, Coquitlam, New West, Port Moody and Surrey are important for three reasons. First, many participants who take part in MB training will likely come from these municipalities and would benefit from opportunities to volunteer in local host organizations. Second, travel to municipalities outside of where volunteers reside can pose a barrier to participation as proximity of host agency location may influence ongoing involvement. Third, these municipalities have experienced large increases in immigrant populations, especially between 1996-2006. MBI host agency expansion to these municipalities will enhance their capacities to adjust to demographic changes and address social inclusion directly.  The Maple Bamboo Initiative strengths do not only create leaders of new immigrants in Metro Vancouver communities. The program itself can become a leader in immigrant civic engagement training and creating partnerships with mainstream host agencies to satisfy a growing and elusive need in public participation practice in Greater Vancouver.  5.2  Challenges  Although the Maple Bamboo Pilot Project has many building blocks in place, challenges to the project?s long-term viability hinge on five key factors including human resources, targets, participant recruitment and retention, marketing and funding. Modifications that meet these challenges can equip the Maple Bamboo Initiative to lead the region in operationalizing a Metro Vancouver immigrant civic participation strategy.        395.2.1  Human Resources The project originated from a commitment to leadership development in immigrant communities and thus far, it has had tremendous success. Consideration of the project?s long-term sustainability requires a closer look at the human resources of the MB project. During the pilot, one part-time coordinator performed all of the project?s myriad tasks. The Maple Bamboo director oversaw the project at the same time as a number of other programs and projects housed at MHHS. In order for Maple Bamboo to expand sustainably, additional staff time and funding dedicated to two different specific programmatic functions should be considered.  MB participant recruitment, training, facilitation, communication, screening and ongoing programmatic support requires one full-time staff person who focuses on quality and commitment of applicants, public participation and program continuity for trainees. This person would have a good working knowledge of immigrant service organizations and outreach techniques to identify newcomer leaders across Metro Vancouver. Second, one full-time staff person could oversee host agency recruitment, marketing to mainstream organizations, mentorship development, capacity building within each host agency and program expansion into new municipalities. This person would have a strong grasp of Canadian governance systems and dedicate time to developing relationships with key allies within mainstream agencies. The staff person would also make public presentations to increase the project?s visibility and connect host agencies with training organizations to build their internal capacity for hosting MB volunteers. The Maple Bamboo Initiative?s current human resource shortage can be remedied with the above suggestions. The project will likely confront significant problems with long-term sustainability (such as staff turn over, personnel burnout, weak host agency relationships and low volunteer retention) if revisions are not made to the Maple Bamboo project?s staff numbers and paid hours.     5.2.2  Targets Maple Bamboo trainees come from seven emerging immigrant communities: African, Bangladeshi, Chinese, Filipino, Hispanic, Korean and Vietnamese communities. These seven ethnic communities were clearly targeted for MB participation because they are, for the most part, underrepresented in public processes across Metro Vancouver. According to the project?s coordinator, this specificity is unnecessary for future participant recruitment to MB training sessions. Immigrants from other ethnic communities such as South Asian and Russian were frustrated that they were unable to participate in the program due to the specific ethnic community criteria. However, participation by underrepresented communities for the initial pilot project highlighted valuable lessons about specific barriers to public involvement faced by these seven emerging groups that can be included into future recruitment techniques. Vietnamese immigrants, for example, were more difficult to access and enroll in the program than participants from other immigrant groups. This could be due to language, social networks, media coverage, interest in public engagement or a combination of any of the above. As the Maple Bamboo Initiative grows, its challenge will be to meet the demand of interested candidates and still represent, as equally as possible, new and emerging immigrant communities in Metro Vancouver. Targets serve as a mechanism to guarantee diversity, particularly of statistically underrepresented populations. The project may wish to place caps on numbers of immigrant participants from each community to continue to ensure a diverse pool of trained MB volunteers.     5.2.3  Participant Recruitment and Retention The Maple Bamboo Initiative is essentially a leadership training program (MB partnership meeting, 2007). It provides background information and tools for immigrants to become actively engaged in their communities. It is important, then, in the recruitment strategy to ensure a qualified, enthusiastic and committed group of trainees. Most volunteer programs experience a reduction in numbers enrolled over time (MB Project Coordinator, 2007) as did the Maple Bamboo Project. However, the participants who attended public meetings and were matched with    40host agencies are models for future recruitment. For example, recruitment materials can include Maple Bamboo participant stories that feature what they have learnt through the program.  As stated in the project?s description, applicants are screened to meet the program?s eligibility requirements of intermediate English, ability to commit to training and public process and keen interest in civic engagement. The project?s recruitment strategy can also include clear benefits to be gained by participants personally. Public speaking skills, participation techniques and networking opportunities can be highlighted. As well, it is crucial to develop strong connections with host agencies prior to recruitment for effective placements that retain and build on the momentum gained by participants in training sessions.     5.2.4  Marketing The Maple Bamboo Project?s staff is very strong when it comes to outreach and marketing in immigrant communities. Consultations with leaders in the seven emerging communities provided detailed information on how and where to market to potential participants including: a review of radio programs, ethno-cultural newspapers and television shows, popular magazines such as Canadian Immigrant, informal networks such as ethno-cultural festivals and church groups and mainstream publications like the Georgia Straight and the on-line Tyee. A marketing strategy focused on mainstream agencies is also necessary. It must include a clear, concise summary of the program objectives and the benefits to host agencies that participate. A communications message that emphasizes the advantages of agency participation should be developed. Opportunities to develop ties to immigrant communities through MB participants, exposure to various forms of public participation, knowledge exchange and internal capacity building that can help the agency reflect the broader demographic change taking place in Metro Vancouver communities could be highlighted.    5.2.5  Funding The Maple Bamboo Project is in its infancy. Over time, the project?s goals and objectives could evolve into an institute for immigrant civic engagement. However, it is dangerous to depend on outside funding to finance the entire project. As one advisory council member noted: ?The government, whatever agency, will give you seed money to do a pilot and maybe, at best run another round. I don?t think this is the kind of project for which you will continuously get funding. I think they really have to start looking at sustainable [funding options]? (MB host agency representative 01 interview, 2007).   One strategy for sustainable funding is to diversify funding sources and develop partnerships with other agencies that will contribute to different aspects of the program. The Maple Bamboo?s director has already begun this process through a proposal that includes three significant partnerships with academia, a social planning research think tank and a non-profit agency. The partners will collaborate over the next funding cycle to work toward the Maple Bamboo project?s objectives. Another strategy could be to develop programs that utilize the human resources developed from within the program itself. Starting with a ?train-the-trainer? approach that places current MB participants? as trainers/leaders in future training sessions, the cost of program delivery can thereby be reduced. Another possibility in meeting funding challenges is to explore fee-charging models for learning and leadership programs. If the MB training and public process placement offers a suite of tangible skills, newcomers might pay to participate. The project could eventually become financially self-sufficient.      415.3  Framework for the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s Future Development A framework for long-term sustainability will reinforce the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s goals and objectives that contain short-term and long-term goals. The project?s long-term objectives are: ??   Create a strategy and develop a plan to increase immigrant civic participation and empowerment in the region. ??   Effect institutional changes that support immigrant integration in public processes. The following framework consists of four components: guiding principles, phased expansion, outcome measurement and sustainable program management. Combined, these elements can have an impact on the Maple Bamboo project?s longevity. 5.3.1  Guiding Principles Strategies are generally informed by guiding principles. The MB project endeavours to increase immigrant participation through a two-part program of host agencies and immigrant participation. Guiding principles, then, can be developed by the advisory council on how to approach and meet long-term project objectives. Guiding principles would likely include: ??   Recognition of and respect for the diversity of experiences and talents that immigrants offer to Canadian public processes. ??   Commitment to develop the capacity of immigrants and host agencies to foster two-way learning. ??   Belief that the Maple Bamboo Initiative fosters cultural pluralism and immigrant leadership in Canada. ??   Motivation that immigrants? active engagement in public process impacts decision-making and policies important to all Canadians. ??   Patience that institutional change takes time and is impacted by the work of the Maple Bamboo Initiative.  5.3.2  Expand in Phases Recognizing that participant recruitment and training are crucial, in some ways they are also the easiest pieces of the project to accomplish. Building enduring relationships with host agencies will take longer and require a different set of expertise. These two phases bring together the two sides of the project and will occur at differing paces. The program?s success cannot rely on the enthusiasm and leadership of new immigrants alone. Equally or more challenging still is the development of opportunities to get involved in a meaningful and ongoing fashion with host agencies.  The MB?s second goal, i.e., to strengthen Canadian civic processes through active integration of immigrants, is not linear. A long-term MB strategy will recognize the fluid and dynamic relationship between newcomers? integration into public processes and their ability to influence decisions. To measure the progress of MB?s host agencies, the inclusion of multicultural representation criteria may be a good starting point. With no specific criteria in place as yet, we must recognize the fragility of immigrant public participation. An ongoing need for training, support and establishing partnerships with public agencies can help achieve the MB project?s second goal.  Initial alliances were made with key host agencies that had positive experiences with MB volunteers. Many of these agencies were enthusiastic about the pilot project from the beginning and are what the abcGTA calls ?low-hanging fruit?. They are on board with the underlying philosophy of the MBI. These relationships must be maintained and developed to grow the network of host agencies that know about and want to be affiliated with the MBI. Over time,    42public, private and non-profit agencies will see the advantages of trained, competent new immigrant members on their leadership committees and subsequent demand for MBI?s matching program will likely increase.  5.3.3  Outcomes Outcome measurement can reach beyond meetings attended and hours logged in public participation processes. Skill development and host agency capacity can be assessed as well through questionnaires that can be administered at the beginning and end of the program?s cycle. Two sample questionnaires that address outcome measurements related to skill development, experience in public processes, capacity and leadership are included in Appendix C and D. The MB project?s ability to tell compelling quantitative and qualitative stories that demonstrate capacity development on both sides of the program is key to a long-term strategy. 5.3.4  Sustainable Program Management As discussed in the interview findings, the Maple Bamboo Project can ensure its long-term success through appropriate mechanisms to acquire diverse funding. Partnerships with many sectors including immigrant service providers, local governments, non-profit agencies, private sector, academia and mainstream host agencies can build widespread support for the program. Measures to increase staff time and number will decrease the likelihood of burnout. Finally, participants? skill development and support will foster leadership in new immigrants and encourage others to get involved.      43Conclusions The potential for projects such as the MMHS? Maple Bamboo Initiative to impact Canadian public processes cannot be understated. Maple Bamboo participants? experience and confidence in public involvement begets more experience and ongoing interest in participation. In short, the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s objectives are being realized. New immigrants in Metro Vancouver are not only curious and informed about local issues; they are becoming actively involved in decision-making processes in their communities. The MB project fills a gap identified between Canadian multicultural policies and their implementation on the ground. The MHHS has pioneered a necessary and innovative program that can be modeled in other communities in BC and perhaps across Canada. With programs such as the Maple Bamboo Project in place, mainstream civic engagement processes can be more representative of their populations and adequately accommodate changing needs and expectations.   The Maple Bamboo Initiative and abcGTA programs equip institutions and community actors with the ability and capacity to implement multicultural policy into on- the-ground action. These programs also serve as central, easily accessible agencies that are well-networked with immigrant communities and can efficiently match participants with organizations. Programs such as MBI and abcGTA have more initial success in working relationships with non-profit agencies and public sector committees that share their mission and vision of inclusive public participation. High caliber candidates with skills and educational backgrounds that can be beneficial to a variety of decision-making bodies will likely expand each program?s reach as more equitable representation becomes an institutional priority in mainstream Canadian agencies. It is important to recognize the role of MHHS, a non-profit multicultural services agency, as a catalyst for affecting change. Programs such as MB that emerge from the Canadian multicultural policy framework can be effectively implemented by the non-profit multicultural service agencies that best know immigrant communities. Partnerships with non-profit multicultural service agencies can facilitate municipal governments?, non-profit boards? and other public and private agencies? commitments to multicultural inclusion that may not have the capacity to make it happen on their own. At present, local authorities lack the constitutional mandate and financial support needed to reflect higher immigrant populations in their communities. It may be in their best interest to work strategically with multicultural service agencies as consultants to engage immigrants in public processes. This engagement, in turn, affects the governance structure at the municipal and provincial levels and demonstrates a ?bottom-up? approach to active multiculturalism. Programs that foster reciprocal relationships between new immigrants and mainstream public processes can make the ideal of a multicultural Canada a reality.    44Recommendations  Common threads drawn from multiculturalism policies, lessons from case examples, interview findings with Maple Bamboo participants and host agencies and their wider implications for new immigrant civic participation form the basis of the recommendations offered in the following section. The recommendations are separated into three categories: program-specific suggestions that depend on funding and program renewals, regional suggestions that depend on expansion opportunities in other municipalities in Metro Vancouver and higher level government policy considerations that are reflected in big picture suggestions. Many of the recommendations have been discussed throughout the report and are relatively straightforward to implement while others require government funding commitments and institutional change to be realized.  Maple Bamboo Program Recommendations It is recommended that the Maple Bamboo Initiative: 1.  Formalize partnership agreements with existing host agencies. Invite host agency representatives to sit on the advisory council and contribute to program direction. Formalized partnerships would include a written agreement clearly outlining expectations of each party. Maple Bamboo Initiative participants, host agencies and MB program duties should also be included.  2.  Hire at least two full-time staff members to promote and sustain the program. One staff member should focus on immigrant recruitment, training, communications, screening, match management, follow-up, programmatic support and internal funding options. Another staff member can focus on host agency recruitment, partnership development, marketing to mainstream organizations, mentorship development within host agencies, training and education for host agency capacity building. He/she should promote agency/board/committee buy-in to secure permanent multicultural seats in decision-making processes.   3.  Adjust and extend program timing and timeline. MB participant preparation should take place at the same time as interesting and abundant civic engagement opportunities emerge. Additional training time beyond the 2-day initial training is needed. The program?s timeline should be extended to a minimum of one year with MB participation in formal public processes commencing in the fall to maximize opportunities for volunteer participation in public processes. 4.  Offer  periodic training and refresher courses to expand and deepen participants? knowledge base. Ongoing training sessions provide chances to ask questions, share concerns, learn about specific subject areas and exchange information. 5.  Consider participant fees or other revenue-generating activities that can lessen dependency on outside funders and build self-sustaining financial resources. Consult with past and future MB participants to test the potential success of a fee-for-service program. 6.  Eliminate the use of web-based blogs and facilitate in-person support mechanisms amongst Maple Bamboo trainees. Initially, face-to-face meetings are friendlier and build trust between participants as they get to know each other. If electronic formats are requested and initiated by MB volunteers, offer guidance and support to ensure smooth operations. 7.  Adopt quantitative benchmarks for outcome measurements. Questionnaires that gather data on skill development and leadership capacity measure progress over time and can be easily administered at the start and end of the program?s cycle.  8.  Create subcommittee working groups of the Maple Bamboo advisory committee to develop action agendas. For example, media can work with host agency representatives to    45develop a marketing strategy that attracts a wider array of MB host agencies. Immigrant service agency representatives can work with MB staff on participant recruitment and placement, particularly on municipal multicultural advisory councils. Academics can work with social research think tank representatives to expand program scope and influence BC and Canadian policy. 9.  Collaborate with other multicultural service agencies to develop civic engagement programs and training for new immigrants and host agencies in surrounding municipalities. Collaborations decrease the pressure on MHHS to independently develop and implement the program throughout the region and draws on local multicultural agency expertise to guide program expansion. In municipalities with little or no resources to dedicate to inclusive public process techniques, MHHS could take the lead. Collaborating organizations should share the same vision and work toward the same goals, objectives and outcomes. 10. Explore cultural competency training for host agency sponsors that would run at the same time as MB volunteers attend training in Canadian public processes. The matching of MB trainees with host agencies would be beneficial to both parties as newly acquired competencies of MB host agencies and MB volunteers are put into action.  Metro Vancouver Municipal Recommendations It is recommended that municipal boards, advisory committees and councils: 11. Support ongoing research on immigrant participation in your municipalities. Further research on immigrant civic engagement in public forums, consultations and mainstream processes is needed, particularly as programs such as the Maple Bamboo project gain momentum in Metro Vancouver and across Canada. Formal systems to quantitatively track new immigrant involvement across municipal governments provide useful data for research on multiculturalism in practice.  12. Adopt written policies and set targets on multicultural inclusion and act on them. Identify organizational leaders with a commitment to diversity to recruit members who ?bridge? between mainstream and immigrant communities. Increase appointments of under-represented groups to achieve pro rata representation, particularly in municipalities experiencing dramatic increases in new immigrant populations.  13. Liaise with immigrant service providers to build capacity and enthusiasm for multicultural representation in public processes. Developing working relationships with immigrant serving agencies with strong ties to immigrant communities can bring fresh faces to municipal public bodies. These partnerships can also provide insight to the barriers to civic involvement faced by new immigrants and strategies to overcome them.  14. Review this report for lessons learned from the Maple Bamboo project. In particular, a review of the City of Vancouver?s Community Visions multicultural outreach program offers a step-by-step guide of how to make municipal processes such as consultations and neighbourhood planning more inclusive. Federal Multicultural Policy Recommendations It is recommended that the Canadian government: 15. Allocate permanent, flexible funding through Canadian Heritage to support new immigrant civic engagement programs in communities across Canada. 16. 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Learning to Engage: Experiences with Civic Engagement in Canada. Ottawa: Canadian Policy Research Networks.    52Appendix A: Interview Schedules The Maple Bamboo Initiative: Fostering Civic Participation of Canadian Immigrants in Public Processes For Maple Bamboo Initiative training participants: Profile 1.  Tell me a little bit about yourself. 2.  How did you get to know about the Maple Bamboo Initiative? 3.  Why did you initially want to participate in the Maple Bamboo initiative? 4.  Have you been involved in public processes before? If so, with which organizations were you involved and how often did you participate? 5.  What are your goals as a participant in the Maple Bamboo Initiative? Capacity  6.  What have you learned so far through this project? 7.  How many times since completing the Maple Bamboo training have you participated in a public process? (these include public forums, community consultations, host agency meetings, letter writing, council meeting attendance, etc.) 8.  Please describe if you think immigrant involvement in Canadian public processes at all levels of government is important.  If so why, if not, why not? 9.      How might you be involved in public processes in the future? 10.  Do you think there has been a change in your confidence in public engagement since you signed up with Maple Bamboo? Please explain.   Long Term Sustainability 11. What are some of your observations as the MB project is right now?  12. What do you think the MB staff could do to make the project sustainable in the  long term? 13. What tips would you give to a host agency that wanted to support a Maple Bamboo trainee? 14. What would you like a host agency to offer you in terms of a volunteer experience as a Maple Bamboo participant?       53For Maple Bamboo Mainstream Host Agencies General 1.  What kind of work does your organization do? 2.  Why does your organization or agency want to participate in the Maple Bamboo initiative? 3.  Has your organization hosted volunteers before? If so, what kinds of things did the volunteers do within your organization? 4.  Approximately how many immigrants (1st generation) sit on your board of directors/ advisory committee/working group? Does your organization have any policy or program with regard to the hiring, retention and human resource development of recent immigrants? 5.  Please describe your agency?s goals as a host agency in the Maple Bamboo Initiative? Capacity 6.  Please describe what you think the strengths of your organization/advisory council/ working group are in relation to hosting a MB volunteer.  7.  What are some of the challenges that your organization might have in participating in the Maple Bamboo Pilot Project? How do you think your organization and the Multicultural Helping House Society or the Maple Bamboo staff may be able to jointly address these challenges? 8.   What do you think your organization?s staff can do to develop its capacity to host Maple Bamboo trainees? 9.  Does your organization have the capacity to host more than one Maple Bamboo volunteer if the project is extended? If so, how many volunteers could potentially be placed here? 10.   How will your agency benefit from hosting a MB volunteer? Long Term Sustainability 11.   What are some of your observations as the MB project is right now? 12.   Would someone in your organization be interested in sitting on the Maple Bamboo Advisory Council (meets quarterly)? 13.   What specific knowledge base, skills sets, attitudes and capabilities do you expect your immigrant trainees or interns to have when they work for your organization? Do you find these in the trainee you have hosted so far?  14.   What do you think the MB staff can do to make the project sustainable in the long term?      54Appendix B: Maple Bamboo Candidate Application  Volunteer Application Date   Ethnic Community   Personal Information Name   Street Address   City, Province Postal Code   Home Phone   Work Phone   E-Mail Address    How many years lived in Canada   Residential status  ----------Landed Immigrant ----------Canadian Citizen ----------Conventional RefugeeGender (for statistical purposes) OPTIONAL   Age (for statistical purposes) OPTIONAL   Highest level of education, country, year   Previous occupation in home country   Current position, Industry, Company    How much time you can commit per month (check off all your availabilities) _____3 hours         ______ 6 hours         ______More  ______Daytime         ______Evenings       ______ Weekends Interests ___ Interested in active participation  ___ Only interested in observing public processes  Tell us in which areas you are interested in volunteering.       55AREAS ACTIVITIES ___ Neighbourhood Safety ___ Policing ___ Education / Kids in School ___ Family & Social services ___ Health  ___ Environmental ___ Recreation ___ Media ___ Municipal Government  ___ Provincial Government ___ Federal Government ___ Olympics 2010 ___ Business associations ___ Community agencies ___ Other:________________________  ___ Administration ___ Outreach activities to your community ___ Community Policing ___ Fundraising ___ Advisory Committee meetings ___ City Council meetings ___ Legislative Assembly meetings ___ Parliamentary Committee meetings ___ Community Fairs / Events ___ Neighbourhood Planning / Programs ___ Newsletter production ___ Volunteer coordination ___ Participating in public hearing ___ Writing letters / complaints  ___ Other:________________________  Previous Volunteer Experience Summarize your previous volunteer experience (public involvement). 1.  2.   3.  Special Skills or Qualifications List top 3 special skills and knowledge you have acquired from previous volunteer work, through public involvement in Canada or in your home country or other activities, including hobbies or sports. 1.   2.  3.  List top 3 special skills and knowledge you would like to learn through the training and volunteering opportunities in the Maple Bamboo Initiative. 1.   2.  3.  Please write a paragraph of ?why you would like to volunteer in particular public process / public agency and what you would like to achieve?             56Person to Notify in Case of Emergency Name  Home Phone   Work Phone   E-Mail Address   Agreement and Signature By submitting this application, you affirm that you understand that you are committing to a 2-day training program and subsequent 6-month practicum in public involvement activities and the hours to which you have committed in this application. You will be entitled to a training completion certificate upon completion of both the training and the practicum.  Name (printed)   Signature  Date   Thank you for completing this application form and for your interest in getting involved in public processes. If you have any questions, please contact us via email or by telephone. Application created by Olga Scherbina, former Program Coordinator    57Appendix C: Sample Questionnaire for Trainees Maple Bamboo Initiative Participant Questionnaire Please complete and return to a Maple Bamboo Staff Person. We ask that you complete this questionnaire to collect data on our program?s outcomes. We also want to learn more about where Maple Bamboo trainees come from and what kinds of skills you gain through your training and civic engagement volunteer placements. Your feedback is very important to the future of the program. This questionnaire is completely confidential. Please be honest and open in your responses. Thank you for your participation. Background Information (Tick the box that applies) 1.  Where do you live? ?  Burnaby  ?  New Westminster  ?  Port Coquitlam  ?  Surrey                         ?  Coquitlam  ?  City of North Vancouver                   ?  Port Moody  ?  Vancouver                         ?  Delta  ?  District of North Vancouver   ?  Richmond  ?  West Vancouver ?  Other:______________ 2.  Are you employed? ?  Part-time, permanent  ?  Casual/Temporary  ?   About to start work ?  Full-time, permanent  ?   Other ______________  ?   No, I am not currently employed 3.  If yes, do you have a job in your chosen field? ?   Yes ?   No 4.  If yes, where do you work?   5.  Have you ever participated in public processes before? ?  Burnaby  ?  New Westminster  ?  Port Coquitlam  ?  Surrey                         ?  Coquitlam  ?  City of North Vancouver                   ?  Port Moody  ?  Vancouver                         ?  Delta  ?  District of North Vancouver   ?  Richmond  ?  West Vancouver ?  Other:______________ ?  Yes, often  ?  Sometimes  ?  Hardly Ever  ?  No, never  ?  Don?t Know/ Undecided    586.  If yes, where did you participate? ?  Home country ?  Canada ?  Somewhere else: Please list where ________________  7.  If yes, what was your role in the public process?   Tick all that apply ?  Observer  ?  Notetaker  ?  Non-Profit Organization Member  ?  Attended Public Consultation  ?  Committee Member  ?  Political Appointment  ?  Presented at Public Forum  ?  Professional Organization Member   ?  Elected Official  ?  Other, please specify:  ______________________ 8.  If no, what would you like your role to be in your public process for Maple Bamboo?  Tick all that apply  ?  Silent Observer  ?  Be a volunteer notetaker  ?  Become a Board Member  ?  Attend Public Forums  ?  Be a committee member  ?  Observe politically appointed committees  ?  Make Public Presentations  ?  Observe a Non-Profit Board of Directors  ?  Volunteer in my area of  interest in some capacity  ?  Other, please specify:  ______________________    59Questions on Perceptions of Inclusivity Perceptions and Attitudes (Tick one box only) Strongly  Agree Some-what Agree Neutral  Some-what Disagree Strongly Disagree Don?t Know 9.  To what extent do you think your views are included in public decisions made in your city?             10.  Do you think elected leaders in your city care about your views?            11.  Do you ever feel that your views are not taken seriously when you speak up in public processes?              12.  Do you know who your Member of Parliament is?   Do you know who any of your City Councillors are?   Member of Parliament: City Councillors: ?  Definitely ?  Probably ?  Probably not ?  Definitely not ?  No ?  Definitely ?  Probably ?  Probably not ?  Definitely not ?  No If yes, who are they? Member of Parliament _______________________________________ City Councillor(s) _____________________________________________  Questions on Skills Development Skills  (Tick one box only) Definitely Not Probably Not Somewhat Probably Definitely  Don?t Know/ Undecided 13.  Would you now write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper?            14. Would you now speak at a public forum or City Council meeting?            15.   Are you familiar with Robert?s Rules of Order?               60Skills  (Tick one box only) Definitely Not Probably Not Somewhat Probably Definitely  Don?t Know/ Undecided 16. How comfortable do you feel speaking in public?            17. How confident do you feel speaking to groups in English?             Questions on Leadership in Public Processes ?Public processes? include many civic activities in your community. Examples are: community consultations, public forums, school board meetings and elections, safety and policing, environmental activities, neighbourhood associations, civic advisory councils and electoral processes. Behaviour and Leadership (Tick one box only) Very  Likely Somewhat Likely Neutral  Somewhat Unlikely Very Unlikely Don?t Know/ Undecided 18.  Are you likely to write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper (in English) on an issue that concerns you?            19.  Are you likely to participate in a public process or consultation in your city?            20.   Are you likely to attend a City Council meeting on an issue important to you?            21.  Do you or would you feel comfortable presenting your opinion at a public forum?            22.  Do you think that you can influence decisions in your city?            23. How likely do you think it is that a member of your ethnic community can influence decisions in your city?            24. How likely do you think it is that you would be elected to political office in your City?                61Behaviour and Leadership (Tick one box only) Very  Likely Somewhat Likely Neutral  Somewhat Unlikely Very Unlikely Don?t Know/ Undecided 25. How likely do you think it is that a member of your ethnic community would be elected to political office in your City?             26.  How difficult do you think it is for new immigrants to get involved in public processes in Canada?  ?  Very Difficult  ?  Somewhat Difficult  ?  Neutral  ?  Not At All Difficult  ?  Don?t Know/ Undecided Thank you for your cooperation!      62Appendix D: Sample Questionnaire for Host Agencies Maple Bamboo Initiative Host Agency Questionnaire Please complete and return to a Maple Bamboo Staff Person as soon as possible. We ask that you complete this questionnaire to collect data on our program?s outcomes. We also want to learn more about host agencies and how your agency benefits from Maple Bamboo volunteer placements. This questionnaire is completely confidential. Your feedback is very important to the future of the program. Please be honest and open in your responses. Thank you for your participation. 1.  What is the name of your agency?_________________________________ Please identify the nature or type of your agency below: ?  Social Service Organization  ?  Working Group                         ?  Provincial Government  ?  Municipal Advisory Council  ?  Private Sector Board  ?  Environmental Organization ?  Public Sector Committee  ?  School Board  ?  Other Non-Profit Agency ?  Other, please specify:  ______________________  2.  What skills are most needed from Maple Bamboo volunteers by your agency? Tick all that apply  ?  Public Speaking  ?  Outreach  ?  Financial/Accounting Skills  ?  Presentation Skills  ?  Translation  ?  Event Planning  ?  Organizational Skills  ?  Graphic Design   ?  Other (Please specify): _________________________      633.  Where is your agency located?  ?  Burnaby  ?  New Westminster  ?  Port Coquitlam  ?  Surrey                         ?  Coquitlam  ?  City of North Vancouver                   ?  Port Moody  ?  Vancouver                         ?  Delta  ?  District of North Vancouver   ?  Richmond  ?  West Vancouver ?  Other: (Please specify):_____________  4.  To what extent is your organization able to prepare work plans for its Maple Bamboo volunteers? (Please tick one box only)   ?  Yes, without difficulty or delay ?  Yes, but would like the assistance of the volunteer  ?  No, not at this time ?  No, we do not have the resources to develop a work plan ?  Other (please specify): _____________________________________________________ Note: Volunteers in the past have noted that clearly defined duties and tasks  that are clearly stated in a work plan with specific responsibilities are  helpful in clarifying the role of the MB volunteer within the organization.  5.  To what extent does you organization have the capacity to offer mentorship to its Maple Bamboo volunteers? (Please tick one box only)  ?  Definitely ?  Probably ?  Probably Not ?  Definitely not  6.  Does your agency have new immigrants (immigrants to Canada in the last 5 years) as members of its governing body? ((Please tick one box only)  ?  Yes, many ?  Yes: a few ?  None at present ?  None but intending to have some soon ?  Other (please specify): _______________________________________________________   7.  If yes, what percentage would you say are new immigrants?  ?  Less than 10%  ?  10%-29%  ?  30%-49%  ?  50% or more  ?  Don?t Know         64 8.  How difficult is it for your organization to attract immigrants to leadership positions?  ?  Very Difficult  ?  Somewhat Difficult  ?  Neutral  ?  Somewhat Easy  ?  Very Easy  ?  Don?t Know/ Undecided  9.  Please briefly explain your response above:   10. Does your organization have a written policy on multicultural representation in leadership positions?  ?  Yes ?  No 11. If no, how likely is it that your organization would consider adopting a written policy on multicultural representation in the future? ?  Very Likely  ?  Somewhat Likely  ?  Neutral  ?  Somewhat Unlikely ?  Not likely  ?  Don?t Know/ Undecided  12. How likely is it that your organization would consider setting quantitative targets for permanent multicultural representation on its governing body? ?  Very Likely  ?  Somewhat Likely  ?  Neutral  ?  Somewhat Unlikely ?  Not likely  ?  Don?t Know/ Undecided  13. Does your organization offer cultural competency training to its staff and leadership?  ?  Yes ?  No 14. What do you think barriers might be to new immigrants getting involved in your organization? Please provide as much details as possible.     15. Do you think these circumstances are changing at all for the better? ?  Definitely ?  Probably ?  Probably Not ?  Definitely not Thank you for your cooperation! For further information, concerns or questions please contact the Multicultural Helping House at 604.879.3277     65  Appendix E: Mentoring Toolkit Excerpts, abcGTA      66        67       68       69        70Appendix F: Maple Bamboo Training Agenda Getting Involved in Public Processes   Saturday, DAY 1  AGENDA AM 9:00 PROJECT INTRODUCTION -  Housekeeping -  MHHS  -  Overview of training over two days -  Objectives for today -  Ground Rules in Learning  -  Overview of the Binder 9:20 PARTICIPANT INTRODUCTIONS -  Previous experience of each participant and lessons they bring to this training session.   9:40   ENVIRONMENT SETTING:     Quiz (Ice breaker)   9:50  WHY GET INVOLVED 10:00 ALL ABOUT GOVERNANCE ? An Overview   ?   Areas of governance     (Presentation + Q & A)  -  Federal Government -  Provincial Government -  Municipal Government -  NGOs, others    71     ?   How You Can Get Involved  (Presentation + Q & A) -  Formally -  Semiformally -  Informally  10:30 BREAK 11:00 ?   What You Need to Know    (Presentation + Q & A) -  Robert Rules of Order -  Tips on presentation -  Unwritten Rules of Conduct -  How to advocate   12:15 LUNCH PM    1:00    Keynote Remarks on Civic Involvement (Presentation + Q & A)             PRACTICAL EXERCISE 1:20  Getting Ready for Council, Legislature Practice Sessions               ?    Each group will be given an issue and enact an advocacy scenario to the whole group. Guidelines on the scenarios and presentation will be provided. -  Intercultural Advisory Committee Meeting, City of Richmond ??   Develop recommendations to the Council on the following issue: Taking land out of Agricultural Land Reserve for a church, along faith row (No. 5 Rd.) in Richmond -  Advocating for Safety in Skytrain Station, City of Vancouver ??   ?Safety in our Neighbourhood?   ?   Overview of scenarios, materials, and roles of participants 1:50  Break out participants into two groups to map out strategy for two mock sessions. 2:20   Conduct mock Advisory Committee Meeting. 2:40  BREAK    72          2:55  Conduct mock Council meeting  3:15  Review lessons learned. Give assignment for next day. 3:30   END OF SESSION   Getting Involved in Public Processes   Sunday, DAY 2  AGENDA AM 9:00 INTRODUCTION/Objectives Overview of training day   9:10   ENVIRONMENT SETTING   How participants felt about the previous day. Share assignment.           9:30   Presentation + Q & A about chosen institutions 9:30 ? 10:00     ?Opportunities for public involvement through BCITP Net?      guest speaker, Provincial Coordinator, BCITP Net    10:00-10:30     ?Board Governance in Richmond Community Centres and opportunities for residents to get involved in Advisory Committees at City of Richmond?    Community Centre Coordinator 10:30 ? 11:00    ?Meet your MP at Constituency Office?     Constituency Assistant, MP Raymond Chan 11:00 ? 11:15    Break  11:15  Getting Ready for practical exercise    73  ?       Group Brainstorming for strategies involving two scenarios: -  Presentation to BC Standing Committee on Economic Development ??   ?How we can facilitate integration of skilled immigrants into the labour market? -  Brainstorming activity to address the following issue:  ??   ?Helping Newcomer-students in school: ESL, bullying, etc.?            ?   Break out participants into two groups, prepare for and enact scenarios. 12 Noon LUNCH 12:45?1:15   Getting Ready: each group prepares respective campaigns 1:15 ? 1:30   Conduct mock BC Standing Committee delegation 1:30 ? 1:45   Conduct Mock Actions Re. Newcomer Kids in School  1:45 - 2:15  Critique and lessons learned 2:15 ? 2:30   Break 2:30- 3:00  Blog Presentation, Q and A 3:00 ? 3:10  Next Steps   3:10 ? 3:25   Evaluation      3:25 ? 3:30   Photo session   3:30       END OF SESSION     74Appendix G: Map of Metro Vancouver Figure 8. Map of Metro Vancouver   App CPRINLeon oINSTIUBC Other lMultic   CO-INA llisoSPONN/A  PROJThe Foste CER Tpendix H:CERTIFCIPAL INVESo ra Angeles  ITUTION(S) Wocations where cultural HelpinNVESTIGATOn R Jones   NSORING AGJECT TITLE: ering Civic T IFICATE E X: Ethics A   FICATE STIGATOR: WHERE RESInstitution the research willng House, CoOR(S): GENCIES: MapParticipatiX PIRY DATE: Approval   OF APINSTITUTIODEPARTMEUBC/CollegInterdisciplinStudies/ComPlanning  SEARCH WILl be conducted:ommunity Cenple ion of C September  7 CertificaPPROVA ON ENT: e nary mmunity & RL BE CARRIVancouvntres, subjectBCanadian  I7 , 2008  ate The Univer sOffice of R eBehaviour aSuite 102,  6Vancouver, AL - MIN/UBC forRegionalH07-0ED OUT: ver (excludes t's home or ofBamboo Immigrants s ity of British e search Serv ia l Research  Et6 190 Agrono mB.C. V6T 1 ZNIMAL BREB NUMB01880 SiteUBC Hospitaffice in Public  7Columbi a  i ce s  Et hics Boardm y Road, Z3  RISK BER: al) Initiativec Processe75e:es   76DOCUMENTS INCLUDED IN THIS APPROVAL: DATE APPROVED:     September 7, 2007  Document Name  Version Date Protocol: Maple Bamboo Proposal Outline   N/A July 16, 2007Consent Forms: Main Study Consent Form  N/A August 30, 2007Questionnaire, Questionnaire Cover Letter, Tests:Maple Bamboo Interview Script Revised Version N/A August 30, 2007Maple Bamboo Interview Script  N/A July 26, 2007Letter of Initial Contact: Maple Bamboo Contact Letter  N/A July 23, 2007   The  application  for  ethical  review  and  the  document(s)  listed  a bove  have  been  reviewed  and  theprocedures  were  found  to  be  acceptable  on  ethical  grounds  for  r esearch  involving  humansubjects.     Approval is issued on behalf of  the Behavioural Research Ethics  Board and signed electronically  by one of the following:  Dr. Peter Suedfeld, Chair Dr. Jim Rupert, Associate Chair Dr. M. Judith Lynam, Associate Chair Dr. Laurie Ford, Associate Chair    77Appendix I: Consent Form/Confidentiality Agreement                                                                           School of Community and Regional Planning 433-6333 Memorial Road,  Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2 Canada  Email: planinfo@interchange.ubc.ca tel: 604.822.4422 | fax: 604.822.3787  SUBJECT CONSENT FOR PARTICIPATION IN A RESEARCH PROJECT The Maple Bamboo Initiative: Fostering Civic Participation of Canadian Immigrants in Public Processes Principal Investigator: Leonora Angeles, Assistant Professor, UBC School of Community and Regional Planning, Faculty of Graduate Studies Tel: 604-822-9312 Fax: 604-822-6162 E-mail: angeles@interchange.ubc.ca Co-Investigator: Allison Jones. MA Candidate, Planning, UBC School of Community and Regional Planning, Faculty of Graduate Studies Tel: 604-708-9405 E-mail: allison99jones@gmail.com Purpose: The purpose of this research is to examine how the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s immigrant participants have been affected by the training they attended on Canadian public process involvement. Specifically, this research will make recommendations to the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s staff that will support the program?s sustainability or long term success. My research will also examine host agencies? roles in helping recent immigrants become more involved in public processes. This research is being conducted by Dr. Angeles and myself independently and is not funded by any institution.  I chose this research area after having taken notes during Maple Bamboo focus group discussions in February and March of 2007.   THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA   78Study Procedures:  The study will involve an interview of up to 60 minutes in length. The interview can take place at the participant?s place of work, home, or other location where he or she will be comfortable.  With the consent of the participant, the interview will be tape-recorded.  If tape-recording causes any discomfort to the respondent, the interviewer will take handwritten notes instead. Each participant will be provided with a summary of the report if they so indicate in the box on page 2 of the consent form. Confidentiality:  The identities of people interviewed for this research study will be kept strictly confidential.  The text of any direct quotations transcribed from interviews will be sent to the relevant interviewee for their review before the quotations are included in the final version of the study. At that time, each participant will be asked to indicate in writing if they wish to have their name appear in the final report. The audio tape recordings of interviews will be available only to the principal and co-investigator. In order to ensure confidentiality, all documents and audio tapes will be identified by code numbers and kept in a locked filing cabinet.   Contact:  If I have any questions or would like further information about this study, I may contact the principal or co-investigator using the contact numbers or email addresses above. If I have any concerns about my treatment or rights as a research subject, I may call the Research Subject Information Line in the UBC Office of Research Services at 604-822-8598.  Consent:  I confirm I understand the contents of this document. I understand that my participation in this study is entirely voluntary and that I may refuse to participate or withdraw from the study at any time without jeopardy.  I also understand that I do not waive any of my legal rights by signing this consent form. I have received a copy of this consent form for my own records.  I consent to participate in this study.    Subject Signature       Date    79Appendix J: Contact Letters                                                                           School of Community and Regional Planning 433-6333 Memorial Road,  Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2 Canada  Email: planinfo@interchange.ubc.ca tel: 604.822.4422 | fax: 604.822.3787 LETTER OF INITIAL CONTACT For Participation in a Research Project July 23, 2007 [Maple Bamboo Participant Name] [Address] Dear [Maple Bamboo Participant Name],  My name is Allison Jones and I am a graduate student at the School of Community and Regional Planning at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver. I am writing to inquire if you would be interested in participating in a research project "The Maple Bamboo Initiative: Fostering Civic Participation of Canadian Immigrants in Public Processes". The Principal Investigator of this project is Dr. Lenora Angeles, my faculty advisor. This research is being conducted by Dr. Angeles and myself independently and is not funded by any institution. This research project will be my final project in the completion of my Masters degree at UBC. I am working with the staff of the Maple Bamboo Initiative to assist me in gathering information about the pilot project.  The purpose of my research is to examine how the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s immigrant participants have been affected by the training they attended on Canadian public process involvement. Specifically, this research will make recommendations to the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s staff that can support the program?s sustainability or long term success. My research will also examine host agencies? roles in helping recent immigrants become more involved in public processes. The results of this research will be presented at the School of Community and Regional Planning. The results will also be used in presentations around the region for educational purposes. A summary of the research results will be distributed to any participant who wishes to have a copy.   I would very much appreciate an opportunity to interview you as a key informant because of your involvement in the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s training program. The interview with each key informant may last from 30 minutes up to 60 minutes in length.  Your participation is entirely voluntary and you may refuse to participate or withdraw from the study at any time, without prejudice. The identities of people interviewed for this research study will be kept strictly confidential unless they consent in writing to be identified. Any direct quotations from interviews that we intend to THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA   80include in the study will first be sent to the interviewee for their review before inclusion in the final draft of the study. If you have any questions or concerns about this study, please do not hesitate to call me at Tel: 604-708-9405 or email me at: allison99jones@gmail.com. I will contact you by phone to confirm whether or not you are interested in participating in this research, and to arrange a mutually agreeable time and place for us to meet. Thank you for your time.  Sincerely,   Allison Jones MA Candidate, Planning School of Community and Regional Planning University of British Columbia       81                                                                          School of Community and Regional Planning 433-6333 Memorial Road,  Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2 Canada  Email: planinfo@interchange.ubc.ca tel: 604.822.4422 | fax: 604.822.3787 July 23, 2007 [Host Agency Name, Contact Name] [Address] Dear [Host Agency Contact Name],  My name is Allison Jones and I am a graduate student at the School of Community and Regional Planning at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver. I am writing to inquire if you would be interested in participating in a research project "The Maple Bamboo Initiative: Fostering Civic Participation of Canadian Immigrants in Public Processes". The Principal Investigator of this project is Dr. Lenora Angeles, my faculty advisor. This research is being conducted by Dr. Angeles and myself independently and is not funded by any institution. This research project will be my final project in the completion of my Masters degree at UBC. I am working with the staff of the Maple Bamboo Initiative to assist me in gathering information about the pilot project.  The purpose of my research is to examine how the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s immigrant participants have been affected by the training they attended on Canadian public process involvement. Specifically, this research will make recommendations to the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s staff that can support the program?s sustainability or long term success. My research will also examine host agencies? roles in helping recent immigrants become more involved in public processes. The results of this research will be presented at the School of Community and Regional Planning at UBC. The results will also be used in presentations around the region for educational purposes. A summary of the research results will be distributed to any participant who wishes to have a copy.   I would very much appreciate an opportunity to interview you as a key informant because of your involvement in the Maple Bamboo Initiative?s participant placement program. The interview with each key informant may last from 30 minutes up to 60 minutes in length.  Your participation is entirely voluntary and you may refuse to participate or withdraw from the study at any time, without prejudice.  The identities of people interviewed for this research study will be kept strictly confidential unless they consent in writing to be identified. Any direct quotations from interviews that we intend to include in the study will first be sent to the interviewee for their review before inclusion in the final draft of the study.  If you have any questions or concerns about this study, please do not hesitate to call me at Tel: 604-708-9405 or email me at: allison99jones@gmail.com. I will contact you by phone to confirm THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA   82whether or not you are interested in participating in this research, and to arrange a mutually agreeable time and place for us to meet. Thank you for your time.  Sincerely,   Allison Jones MA Candidate, Planning School of Community and Regional Planning University of British Columbia  

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