Our History | Immigrant Services Calgary

Our History

For over 40 years, we have worked to make a difference in the lives of immigrant and refugee families and individuals.

From our humble beginnings as a one-person team to becoming one of the largest settlement organizations in Alberta, we continue to offer a broad range of comprehensive programs and services to facilitate successful settlement and integration of immigrants and refugees in Canada.

Our agency logo describes us best: the three freshly sprouted leaves depicting the interconnection of immigrants and refugees starting a new life, our valued stakeholders and community partners, and our own agency. The red maple leaf represents Canada and the Canadian society and the fusion of the two plants represents the successful settlement and integration of recent arrivals.

1977 Immigrant Services Calgary, under the name of Calgary Immigrant Aid Society was established as the first settlement agency in Calgary. 

1981 The Settlement Program began receiving funding from the Provincial Government.

1982 Public education and outreach by the agency continued to increase through the support of the Federal Government. Immigrant Services Calgary began offering the Citizenship Program.

1985 Established the Immigrant Vocational and Language Referral Centre (IVLRC), the forerunner of ILVARC.

1993 The services of IVLRC were expanded to offer centralized eligibility assessment and referral for Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) and its name was changed to the Immigrant Language and Vocational Assessment – Referral Centre (ILVARC).

1994 The Mosaic Family Resource Centre was established to meet the individual and collective needs of the immigrant and refugee families.

1997 The Immigrants of Distinction Awards are launched to recognize the important contributions that immigrants make to the Calgary community and to proudly mark ISC’s 20th anniversary.

2007 After 30 years as a Calgary Immigrant Aid Society, the agency launched its new identity as Immigrant Services Calgary.

2012 Immigrant Services Calgary celebrated 35 years of service to the community.

2014 ISC received a national award from CIC’s – International Qualifications Network for success of its MAPLE 2.0 – Mentorship in Action Project as well as a certificate of recognition from the Prime Minister’s office commending ISC for its commitment to helping newcomers build successful lives for themselves and their families.

2016 ISC received a certificate of achievement from the Senate of Canada in recognition of the 20th edition of the Immigrants of Distinction Awards.

2017 ISC celebrated its 40th Anniversary of providing comprehensive settlement services to Calgary’s newcomers.