The Social Research and Demonstration Corporation (SRDC) has released its initial evaluation of the CANN E-Link, a technology platform developed by S.U.C.C.E.S.S. as a part of its Community Airport Newcomers Network (CANN). CANN E-Link aims to tackle the challenge of newcomer awareness and engagement with free settlement services during their critical initial months in Canada.
CANN E-Link’s arrival e-notification and information-sharing system seeks to information Newcomers about services and increase the uptake of settlement services by alerting settlement service provider organizations (SPOs) as they reach out to newcomers entering Canada through the Vancouver International Airport (YVR).
S.U.C.C.E.S.S. developed new technology modules to capture the needs assessment and contract information for newcomers arriving through YVR. The Client Referral Service System (CRSS) sends the information electronically to SPOs in the community where the newcomer will initially be staying. SPOs who receive the e-notification reach out to the newcomer to engage and support them in accessing settlement services appropriate for their needs.
SRDC’s evaluation of CANN E-Link included delving into administrative data from the E-Link system, conducting interviews with CANN staff and partner SPOs, and gathering survey data from both CANN and E-Link clients. The evaluation reveals that the CANN E-Link project has been implemented as designed, and is already exceeding expectations in terms of immediate impact and policy objectives.
E-Link has substantially increased the contact of newcomers with a SPO by 17 percentage points soon after arrival. Usages of settlement services and employment services increased by over seven percentage points.
“These impacts corroborate with the positive experience newcomers have with CANN and E-Link,” said Taylor Shek-wai Hui, Research Director, SRDC. “The process was simple and easy to understand, especially if the CANN staff spoke in their preferred language.”
Other key findings from the interim evaluation include:
“CANN E-Link bridges the gap between newcomers and essential services, ensuring a smoother settlement journey and enhancing their prospects for success in Canada,” said Mr. Hui. “The positive feedback we have received from newcomers and the remarkable outcomes we have witnessed thus far exemplifies S.U.C.C.E.S.S. and CANN’s commitment to enhancing newcomer experiences of settling in their new home.”
CANN E-Link was made possible thanks to funding from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
SRDC’s final evaluation report, offering further insights into E-Link's impact on settlement service utilization and overall newcomer settlement outcomes within the first six months of arrival, is scheduled for release in March 2024.