Scotiabank and The 519

The first of the two projects The 519 will launch is Project Unlock, which aims to provide individualized programs to 2SLGBTQIA+ newcomers, including financial assistance, to achieve certification for in-demand careers.

Participants will receive mentorship, coaching opportunities and job search support. The 519 will also deliver training for employers across Canada to build more inclusive and accepting employment environments.

The second project is El Lugar, which supports Latin American newcomers and includes gatherings, workshops, as well as language and integration support, to help them successfully enter the workplace and maintain employment.

The 519, which was founded in 1976, is a City of Toronto agency and a registered charity.

ScotiaRISE is the bank’s ten-year, $500 million commitment and social impact strategy helping people in three focus areas: improving high school and post-secondary participation, removing career barriers and supporting newcomer economic inclusion. It also invests in programs that address reclamation of Indigenous language and culture, as well as urgent and basic needs. Since its start in 2021, it has invested $102 million in funding, globally, for 200 organizations.

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Scotiabank’s other initiatives

In 2023, Scotiabank announced the launch of its new Global Inclusive Standards of Care for employee benefits. With a plan to fully implement by the end of 2030, its initial focus will be on health gaps for women and the 2SLGBTQIA+ community, and will cover areas like mental health, women's health and expanded same sex partner coverage. However, the Global Inclusive Standards of Care plans to impact all employees.

Scotiabank also enhanced gender affirmation healthcare that is not covered under government health plans. In Trinidad and Tobago, it has extended medical coverage to same-sex partners of employees, the first in the industry to include this benefit in the country.

Additionally, its Empower program, which supports 2SLGBTQIA+ leaders with mentorship opportunities, is in its fourth year and plans to expand.

As of the end of April 2024, Scotiabank has assets of about $1.4 trillion.

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New to Canada? Here are some financial literacy tools to be aware of

Moving to another country can be both exhiliarting and disquieting, especially when trying to navigate the ins-and-outs of personal finance in a different country, with all its disparate rules, regulations and offerings. A Simplii Financial poll found that more than half (57%) of respondents say financial institutions could do more to cater to newcomers, and even more say they found applying for a Canadian bank account confusing (61%).

However, there are resources to help you get off your feet and make the correct financial decisions to help you live a prosperous life in Canada. The Canadian government has an extensive repository of organizations that offer financial literacy programs.

If you’re looking for financial literacy programs in your area, you can try the following:

Alberta: Centre For Newcomers offers free financial coaching and financial literacy workshops.

British Columbia and Yukon: Chartered Professional Accountants British Columbia has a free financial literacy program for residents of B.C. and Yukon.

Manitoba: The government of Manitoba provides guides and information on consumer education for new immigrants.

Newfoundland: The Association for New Canadians NL provides settlement and orientation services, including financial literacy.

New Brunswick: ABC Life Literacy Canada offers the ABC Money Matters program to increase financial literacy for newcomers to New Brunswick. The program is also available throughout Canada.

Nova Scotia: The YWCA Halifax offers a Financial Literacy for Newcomers (FLNP) program, that includes information on budgeting, saving, taxes, and other relevant information.

Nunavut: The Government of Nunavut participates in Financial Literacy Month, and ABC Life Literacy Canada’s Money Matters Core program is offered in the territory.

Northwest Territories: The Welcome to the NWT guide for newcomers provides information regarding financial matters in the territory. Newcomers are also encouraged to contact the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada for assistance and more information.

Ontario: Prosper Canada provides financial empowerment services, including financial literacy and coaching, to vulnerable communities throughout Ontario and all of Canada.

Prince Edward Island: Immigrant & Refugee Services Association Prince Edward Island offers resources for financial literacy.

Quebec: The ABC Money Matters program is available in Quebec, and aims to increase financial literacy and education among newcomers.

Saskatchewan: The Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan provides information on financial literacy for newcomers.

Sources

1. Simplii Financial: "Newcomers highlight opportunities for Canadian banking in new Simplii poll"

2. Centre For Newcomers

3. Chartered Professional Accountants British Columbia

4. Government of Manitoba

5. Association for New Canadians NL

6. ABC Money Matters

7. YWCA Halifax

9. Welcome to the NWT

10. Financial Consumer Agency of Canada

11. Prosper Canada

12. Immigrant & Refugee Services Association Prince Edward

13. Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan

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Nicholas completed his master's in journalism and communications at Western University. Since then, he's worked as a reporter at the Financial Post, Healthing.ca, Sustainable Biz Canada and more. Aside from reporting, he also has experience in web production, social media management, photography and video production. His work can also be found in the Toronto Star, Yahoo Finance Canada, Electric Autonomy Canada and Exclaim among others.

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