CCBR typically has 15-20 ongoing projects and has completed over 450 projects since 1982. Each project is guided by our commitment to impacting social change in practical and powerful ways. We conduct research with people not on people, cultivating respect with communities at every step of the process.

    Projects can be searched for using words from the project title or using the service area, theme, or date range for the project. You can also type 'Service Area' or 'Theme' into the search bar to get a list of options in each of these fields.

     This research project was a collaborative effort led by the Centre for Community Based Research (CCBR) in partnership with the Waterloo Region Immigration Partnership and Peel Newcomer Strategy Group and funded by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). This project's purpose was to collaboratively understand the settlement experience of racialized newcomers, with a focus on how information and communication technologies (ICTs) facilitate and impact along the settlement journey.

    The project goals were for the settlement sector and wider community in Waterloo and Peel to gain a deeper understanding of 1) how racism and digital inequity intersect and impact on racialized newcomers, and 2) how policies and practices for using ICTs can mitigate harm and support racialized newcomers' settlement and integration processes.

    The project unfolded in three phases over 10 months. In phase 1, an advisory committee – formed with guidance from the local immigration partnerships in the Waterloo and Peel regions – co-designed the study protocols with the research team. During phase 2, relevant stakeholders in the settlement sector were engaged through a literature review, key informant interviews, focus groups, and case study stories. In phase 3, the project moved from research to dissemination. We produced a report, an infographic and facilitated feedback sessions in each community (Peel and Waterloo).

    The findings revealed that racialized newcomers encounter both empowerment and obstacles in using ICTs. Settlement service providers demonstrate a commitment to addressing digital inequities through various, and in some cases tailored, programs and improved access to ICT resources. Despite this commitment, challenges such as limited resources, diversity in digital literacy levels, and privacy concerns persist. Additionally, the ad hoc nature of current support systems highlights a policy gap. This gap can be addressed by adopting a sector-wide systemic approach to addressing newcomer’s ICT related needs. Also, findings show that the effectiveness of initiatives in combating structural racism remains uncertain due to a lack of comprehensive evaluation strategy. The findings section concludes with some organizational stories showcasing exemplary approaches to supporting racialized newcomers, particularly in promoting digital equity.

    Moving forward, recommendations revolve around two main concepts: "flexibility in service provision" and "capacity building for the sector." The recommendations encompass adopting a client-centered approach by involving newcomers in program development and delivery, ensuring flexibility in service delivery methods, and expanding hybrid models of service delivery. Systemic integration of digital equity is crucial, along with developing tailored digital literacy programs and enhancing language and translation support. Organizations should adopt a trauma-informed approach, strengthen trust and safety measures, and foster collaborative partnerships. Leveraging community and family networks, addressing mobility and accessibility issues, increasing funding, committing to ongoing research and evaluation, and improving knowledge mobilization are also essential steps in enhancing equitable support for racialized newcomers in the settlement sector.

    Read the full report here.