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Support is available to Ukrainians arriving in Alberta who are affected by the crisis in Ukraine.
Ukrainians arriving in Alberta
There are programs and supports available to help Ukrainians who are arriving in Alberta. Read important information on how to access settlement services, enrol children into school and childcare, find jobs, get your credentials recognized, get a driver’s licence or identification card, access the health care system, and set up banking and finances.
The Government of Alberta recently announced an additional $2.2 million to support settlement and language services delivered by newcomer-serving organizations in the province. This includes $1.2 million in support of settlement and integration services for Ukrainians, as well as $1 million towards the Community Adult Learning Program.
Through the Alberta Settlement and Integration Program, the Government of Alberta provides financial support to settlement agencies to deliver ongoing settlement services to newcomers who live and work in Alberta.
These agencies provide programs and direct services such as:
- information about health care, housing, immigration, and schools for children
- learning English
- connecting newcomers with cultural or faith communities
- providing referrals to programs and services
- finding employment
- learning about Canadian culture
Funded settlement agencies
- Calgary Catholic Immigration Society
- Catholic Social Services
- Centre d'accueil pour nouveaux arrivants francophones – Settlement Services for Francophone Newcomers in Calgary and Edmonton and Rural Small Centres in South, Central and North Alberta
- Centre for Newcomers (CFN)
- Edmonton Immigrant Services Association
- Francophonie Albertaine Plurielle-FRAP-Society – Settlement and Integration Services in Edmonton region, Fort McMurray and Red Deer
- Grande Prairie Centre for Newcomers
- Kneehill Adult Learning Society – Kneehill Adult Learning & Settlement and Integration Services
- Taber & District Community Adult Learning Association – Taber Newcomer Support Services
- YMCA of Northern Alberta
Learn more about settlement support programs in Alberta.
Email [email protected] if you have any general questions about settlement and language supports.
Federal settlement services
The Government of Canada has made settlement services available to all Ukrainian temporary residents and their dependents in Canada until March 31, 2023. Visit the Government of Canada website for more information.
Alberta public libraries
Alberta public libraries are a valuable resource for newcomers. At more than 300 locations, library visitors can access books and magazines, computer and internet access, educational and language tools, resources on immigration and job seeking, and much more.
Details on programs and services, and where newcomers can go to get more information, are on Library supports for newcomers.
Through the Alberta Settlement and Integration Program, the Alberta government provides financial support to settlement agencies to deliver ongoing language services to newcomers who live and work in Alberta. These services include language assessments, language training and education referrals and drop-in English as an Additional Language (EAL) classes.
English language assessments and training referrals
- Catholic Social Services – Language Assessment and Referral Centre
- Immigrant Services Calgary - Calgary Language Assessment and Referral Centre
EAL drop-in services offer eligible newcomers alternative English language learning opportunities when they cannot access regular programming. For more information, contact:
- Cultural Connections Institute – The Learning Exchange (CCI-LEX) - EAL Drop-In Services
- Taber & District Community Adult Learning Association - Taber English as an Additional Language Drop-In Centre
- The Immigrant Education Society (TIES) – Drop-in ESL, Literacy and Basic English Classes
- Forest Lawn Calgary Office: 403-235-3666
- Whitehorn or Westwinds Calgary Office: 403-291-0002
Email [email protected] if you have any general questions about settlement and language supports.
Community Adult Learning Program
Through the Community Adult Learning Program, the Government of Alberta is providing an additional $1 million to help improve your reading, writing and learning skills once you arrive in Alberta.
Organizations across Alberta deliver part-time, non-formal learning opportunities that support the development of literacy, numeracy, language, digital or other life skills.
Learn more about the Community Adult Learning Program.
Federal language services
The Government of Canada provides language assessments for newcomers to register into the Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) program.
Getting a driver’s license or identification
To get a driver’s licence or Alberta ID card for the first time, a registry agent will ask for documentation that proves who you are, proves you are an Alberta resident and proves that you are lawfully entitled to be in and remain in Canada. All documentation presented must be valid, and in English or accompanied by a written translation from an approved translator.
To get a learner’s licence, a person must be at least 14 years old.
To get a driver’s licence, a person must be at least 16 years old.
To get an identification card, a person must be at least 12 years old.
Proof of identity
Documents that contain a photo and prove your identity:
- non-Canadian passport
- a driver’s licence or ID card issued by an official government
- permanent residence card issued by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
Examples of documents that are accepted for proof of legal entitlement in Canada (these documents may also contain a photo and can be used to prove your identity):
- Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel (CUAET) issued by IRCC
- work permit issued by IRCC
- study permit issued by IRCC
- confirmation of permanent residence issued by IRCC
- permanent residence card issued by IRCC
Example of documents that are accepted for proof of Alberta residency, which must contain an Alberta address:
- utility, gas, phone or cable bills
- bank or credit card statements
- residential lease agreement
- pay stub
- written confirmation of Alberta employment
- written confirmation from an Alberta educational institution
- statutory declaration completed in a registry agent office stating you are a resident of Alberta
If you are applying for a driver’s licence and you already have a valid driver’s licence(s) from another jurisdiction, you must surrender it to the registry agent.
Your Alberta driver’s licence or ID card may take up to two weeks to arrive by mail at your Alberta address. The card will not be delivered if you have mail-forwarding.
No proof of identity
If you do not have ID, or your ID has been lost, stolen, or destroyed a registry agent can help you. This process is still being developed.
Parental/guardian consent requirement for children under the age of 18
A person under the age of 18 must have the consent of a parent or guardian when applying for a driver’s licence or ID card for the first time. A guardian is someone who is responsible for the care and well-being of the person who is under the age of 18.
The cost of a driver’s licence, for a one year term, is $16.00. In addition, the registry agent may charge a service charge of up to $10.00.
The cost of an ID card, for a one year term, is $8.00, in addition, the registry agent may charge a service charge of up to $8.00.
Testing requirements for driver’s licences
If you are living in Alberta and take up residence, you must exchange your current driver's licence for an Alberta driver’s licence within 90 days of moving to the province.
To get a driver’s licence in Alberta, you will need to pass a knowledge test and road test.
Step 1. Pass a Class 7 knowledge test
Visit a registry agent and take a knowledge test.
Alberta’s class 7 learner’s licence allows you to drive the following vehicles:
- moped (by yourself)
- all Class 5 or Class 6 vehicles (with someone over 18 who has a full Class 5 driver’s licence)
Step 2. Exchange your driver's licence
Visit a registry agent and hand in your valid driver’s licence that is equivalent or higher to an Alberta Class 5 licence.
The registry agent will check to see if you can apply for the Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) exemption program and will give you an application to complete.
Your licence, application for GDL exemption and support documents will be sent to the Service Alberta Special Investigations Unit (SIU) for review. If approved, you can go for your Class 5 road test once approval is given. If not approved, you must hold your Class 7 learner’s licence for one year before you can take a Class 5 basic road test to get a Class 5 licence.
Alberta’s class 5 driver’s licence allows you to drive the following vehicles by yourself:
- 2-axle single motor vehicle
- motorhome without airbrakes unless you hold an air brake certificate
- tow a trailer with one or more axles if the trailer is not equipped with airbrakes
- moped, recreational vehicle, or any combination of recreational vehicles and a trailer, if the trailer has 2 axles or less and isn’t equipped with airbrakes
For more information on getting an Alberta driver’s licence, visit: Exchange a licence from outside Alberta.
Getting health coverage
Health care in Alberta
In Alberta, you need provincial health coverage and a health card to get health care services.
Provincial health coverage is provided through the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan.
How to apply for health coverage and get a health card
Before applying for health coverage, it is best to get an Alberta identification card or an Alberta driver’s licence. You can get these documents at a registry office.
Once you have an identification card or a driver’s licence, here’s how to apply for health coverage:
1. Complete an application form.
The application form is included in your folder and is also available online: cfr.forms.gov.ab.ca/Form/AHC0102.pdf
2. Take photocopies of your identification.
3. Mail your documents or take them to a registry office.
You can either mail your completed application form and copies of your identification, or you can take these documents to a health registry office.
PO Box 1360, Station A
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 2N3
A list of health registry locations is available online.
A health card will be mailed to you.
If you have questions, you can send an email to [email protected].
Your Alberta health card
When you receive your Alberta health card, remember to carry it with you.
Show your health card whenever you need to get health services.
How to get health information and advice
Call Health Link at 811. Translation services are available. Calls are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
How to get mental health or addiction information and advice
Call 1-877-303-2642. Translation services are available. Calls are answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
How to find a doctor
Ask your host family or search online: albertafindadoctor.ca.
How to find a hospital
How to get emergency health care
How to get emergency prescription drug coverage and emergency dental and optical services
- Call Alberta Supports – Help is available in more than 100 languages
- Call the 24-hour Emergency Income Support Contact Centre
For more information about health services in Alberta, visit:
Accessing education services
To register in a school, parents should:
1. Identify the school that you would like to have your children attend.
2. Contact the school and complete the student registration form.
3. The school may request the following documentation to ensure the student is eligible to access education:
- Immigration documents issued by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) that a person receives prior to or when entering Canada, such as temporary resident documents, Confirmation of Permanent Residence or Refugee/Refugee Claimant documents. These documents should be provided for both parent(s) and child, if possible.
- Families may also be asked for student birth certificates or other documentation that shows the parent/child connection if the IRCC documents do not name family members.
- View a list of Alberta schools with Ukrainian language programs (PDF, 437 KB).
There are a number of organizations and resources that can help you find work and build your career in Alberta:
- Alberta Supports Centres provide employment programs and services across Alberta, including job fairs, workshops, information sessions, and labour market information.
- alis provides career, learning and employment information for Albertans.
- Immigrant-serving agencies offer services to newcomers, including help with finding a job.
Apply for your Social Insurance Number (SIN)
To work in Canada or access government programs and benefits, you will need a 9-digit number known as a Social Insurance Number (SIN).
Service Canada is responsible for issuing SINs. To learn about what documents are required to apply for a SIN, or to apply for your SIN online, go to: www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/services/sin.html
Alternatively, you may apply for your SIN in-person at a Service Canada location. If you choose to apply in person, it is strongly recommended that you book an appointment prior to your visit by using the Service Canada request form available at: eservices.canada.ca/en/service/
Learn more about working in Alberta.
Getting your credentials and qualifications recognized
Educational and professional qualifications and standards differ from country to country. You may need to have your international credentials assessed to see how they compare with Alberta's standards.
Your educational credentials are certificates that show that you have completed high school or post-secondary education. The International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS) will assess your international academic credentials and provide an assessment that indicates how your credentials compare to standards in Alberta.
An IQAS assessment can be used to support your application for employment, admission to select post-secondary institutions, and licensure with select Professional Regulatory Organization (PRO). As an agency designated by the Government of Canada, IQAS also completes Educational Credential Assessments (ECA) for immigration purposes.
For more information, visit International Qualifications Assessment Service (IQAS).
Regulated occupations and trades
Many trades and occupations in Alberta are regulated, which means you need to be licensed by a provincial Professional Regulatory Organization (PRO) to work in that occupation. Other common terms that mean the same thing as regulated are “certified” and “registered.” Regulated occupations and trades require recognition by professional regulatory bodies to ensure workers meet standards of practice.
To learn more about regulated occupations in Alberta, visit Foreign Qualification Recognition.
To learn more about designated trades in Alberta, visit Apprenticeship and Industry Training.
Opening a bank account
Most Albertans keep their money in a bank, a credit union or ATB Financial. You must pay a service charge for most banking services. Financial institutions offer services such as:
- chequing, savings and other types of accounts
- utility, telephone and credit card bill payment services by phone, online or at an automated teller machine (ATM)
- safety deposit boxes
- debit cards and credit cards
- money exchange, money orders and traveller’s cheques
When you open an account, you will need to provide:
- photo identification (ID)
- a second piece of ID
- your social insurance number for income tax purposes
You do not need to have a job or deposit a certain amount of money into your account.
Visit Opening a bank account to learn more about opening a bank account, or visit a financial institution near you.
On April 9, the Government of Canada announced a series of measures to make it easier for Ukrainians fleeing the conflict to come to Canada including:
- Targeted charter flights to Canada for Ukrainians;
- Short-term income support to ensure basic needs are met; and
- Temporary hotel accommodation for up to two weeks.
The Government of Canada has also introduced new immigration measures to help people affected by the conflict in Ukraine, including urgent and priority processing of documents and applications and contact options.
Rental information – tenants
There are many resources available to help understand your rights and responsibilities as a renter in Alberta:
- Landlords and tenants provides information for landlords and tenants, and rent and rental properties.
- Information for tenants and landlords can help you find information related to specific topics about living in or operating a residential rental property.
- Security deposits and changes has information related to rental security deposits, sometimes called a damage deposit in Alberta.
- Learn what information a landlord can and cannot ask for of new tenants.
- In Alberta, the Residential Tenancies Act applies to most people who rent the place where they live. This law sets out the rights and responsibilities that apply to tenants.
- Tip sheet for tenants covering all aspects of the Residential Tenancies Act (RTA)
- If you encounter a violation of the RTA when trying to find a rental property, the Consumer Investigations Unit (CIU) of Service Alberta is responsible for Alberta’s consumer protection and tenancy laws.
- Consumer Tips Filing a Complaint explains how to file a consumer complaint with Service Alberta and when an investigation may be opened, as well as other options available to consumers.
Prioritizing AAIP applications
Alberta’s government is prioritizing the assessment of applications for permanent residency made by Ukrainian nationals through the Alberta Advantage Immigration Program (AAIP). Candidates must still meet all program criteria.
Application and post-decision service fees for the Alberta Advantage Immigration Program are also being temporarily waived for new applications and requests made by Ukrainian nationals. These measures will be reviewed quarterly.
Read the news release to learn more.
Supporting humanitarian aid in Ukraine
Financial support for Ukraine
Alberta’s government is contributing more than $11.3 million in support for Ukraine, including:
- $1 million to the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal, organized by the Ukrainian Canadian Congress and the Canada Ukraine Foundation, to help coordinate and deliver humanitarian aid.
- $5 million to the Ukrainian World Congress to equip 5,000 members of the Ukrainian Territorial Defence Force with defensive equipment.
- $5 million to the Canada Ukraine Foundation for additional humanitarian aid.
- $350,000 to the Ukrainian Canadian Congress Alberta Provincial Council to support their efforts.
Albertans who wish to donate to the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal can visit cufoundation.ca.
Living and working in Alberta
There are programs available to help individuals live and work in Alberta, Canada. Explore options to work temporarily or to become a permanent resident.
Come to Canada
To find out if you can apply for permanent residence, please use the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) Come to Canada online tool. It will help you determine what immigration programs you may be eligible to apply for, and how to submit an application.
Bringing family to Canada
You can sponsor certain relatives to come to Canada if you are at least 18 years old and a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada. If you sponsor a relative to come to Canada as a permanent resident, you must support your relative financially when they arrive.
Federal Express Entry
Express Entry is an Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) electronic application system that manages and selects applicants for permanent residence who have skilled work experience. To access Express Entry, you must first complete a profile. If you are accepted into a pool of candidates, IRCC may invite you to apply for permanent residence in Canada.
National Occupational Classification
The National Occupational Classification (NOC) is the nationally accepted authoritative resource on occupations. It is used to categorize occupations in Canada by skill levels. The NOC can help you determine if your work experience is eligible under Canada’s immigration or work permit programs.
A tutorial is also available to help you determine your NOC code.
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