On July 28th, we celebrated at the Wrap Up Event of the 6th Annual TD VISMIN O.N.E. – WORLD SKILLS Mentorship Program which brought together all of the volunteers, saff, mentees and mentors who have been working hard to support the mentees in reaching their career objectives.
World Skills would like to express sincere thanks to the Executive Sponsors from TD Canada – Lina Abdelhussein, Connie Chan and Michelle Wilson for sponsoring the program this year.
To date, 93 newcomer mentees have benefited from this program and about 78 mentors from TD have supported in mentoring the mentees. Over 600 lives have been touched through the many activities and mentoring interventions over the last six years.
Twenty clients are currently employed with TD Canada. Megistab Tsegaye, Executive Director of World Skills, thanked TD Canada for their support towards the program and also shared many insights about the importance of mentoring and how Canada is also a leader in the settlement and integration of newcomers.
Gurpreet Raindy is one of the mentees who have benefitted from this year’s program:
“I was matched with an excellent mentor, SULEKHA ALI who encouraged me to keep on applying for jobs that match my experience, skills and competencies. The activities that we are doing together during the mentee-mentor relationship include, but are not limited to, resume review, networking, job search methodology and interview tips. She boosted my confidence in job searching. I am happy that the TD VISMIN-WORLD SKILLS mentorship program is here to stay. Its importance cannot be over emphasized as it gives newcomers insights into the realities of the job market, employer’s expectations, and the culture of the Canadian workplace.”
Two other mentees, Zobaier Hossain and Jaya Gupta from the 2015 mentorship program also spoke about the powerful impact of the mentorship program which helped them secure employment at TD Canada.
The mentorship program does not only help the mentees. One of the objectives for the program is to help TD staff develop their leadership competencies through mentoring and many of the mentors gave testimonials that they too were learning and growing professionally, through mentorship. Some of the mentors have been helping mentees for 4 years! This in itself is a testimonial to the impact of the mentorship program.
The program has been carefully designed to run for three months with four touch point activities which support mentees in cross cultural communication, networking, HR activities such as resume writing and interview techniques. Staff from TD facilitate several of these sessions which leverage on their expertise in various roles.
This is a great example of a program which is championed by new Canadians. Mayank Sharma, from TD Canada landed in Canada in 2003 and received employment support services from World Skills Employment Centre. As a means of giving back and supporting his fellow newcomers, he approached World Skills in 2010 to brainstorm on ideas of how he could give back. Magdalene Cooman, the Director of Employer Engagement at World Skills worked with him in developing the idea of the mentorship program and TD Canada further supported it.
The program is managed between the two organizations and has been further championed by the Asian Leadership Network which is now merged with the TD VISMIN O.N.E. affinity group of TD Canada Trust. Volunteers from both organizations invest many hours in the program because they experience the great benefits of learning, giving and supporting each other to reach their career aspirations.
Special thanks to Mayank Sharma, Shruti Sharma, Magdalene Cooman, Shaye Belanger, Atoosa Adnani and the many other volunteers who have worked hard to create another successful program this year.
We had special entertainment by a group of Syrian refugee dancers and a young musician from Latin America, Juan Carrion.
The testimonials and experiences of individuals who are participating in the program, demonstrate the great value of mentorship in expanding opportunities, creating friendships, accessing the hidden job market and generally leveraging the talents and skills of a team which is bigger than any one single person.
If you are a newcomer and you are interested in finding out more about how you can access programs like this mentorship program, please contact us at 613- 233-0433 x 300.