Nov 22 2011


Timelines and the frustrating wait!

This post is here because of the TOO MANY similar queries about the timelines. I understand how frustrating the wait can be as we have gone through the same . But sometimes, patience is the key!

As per CIC, the current timelines for Pre June applications are as below.

The official website says the CURRENT timelines are not shown as sufficient data doesn’t exist.

As the trends are observed in forums and elsewhere, they are taking about a year to finalize the Post June 26, 2010 applications while the Pre June applications are taking forever to get processed. Currently it’s about 2 years or more.

I request you all to understand this FACT and be informed. Please note that I will not be answering future queries regarding the timelines such as when will I get medicals or AOR etc., The procedure is already outlined in this blog.

Thanks for your cooperation. I hope you understand.

Indira Prabhakaran.

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Nov 18 2011

Free ELT Courses for Newcomers in Oakville

Halton Multicultural Council is pleased to announce a FREE Enhanced Language Trainings (ELT) which are designed to develop the language and communication skills of foreign trained professionals in the fields of Accountants and Bookkeepers, Office Management and Community Policing!

Please refer to the attached flyers for your reference.

All classes starting in January 2012! Act fast as seats are limited!

  • Free bus tickets available
  • Free child minding is available for Office Management and Community Policing
  • For more information please call at: (905) 842-2486 Ext. 233 or email:

Office Management Flyer

Accountants and Bookkeepers

Community Policing Flyer

Please share this info with your friends and family who might be interested in this.


Indira Prabhakaran.

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Nov 11 2011

Cultural Associatio​ns in Canada

Here are few more cultural associations that immigrants can benefit from as mentioned in a previous post.

1. Madras Arts & Cultural Association

2. Bharathi Kala Manram

3. Telugu Cultural Association of Greater Toronto(TCAGT)


5. Kannada Sangha Toronto

6. Asian Canadian Cultural Organization

7. All Toronto Malayalee Association

8. Telugu Alliances of Canada-(TACA)

This is not an exhaustive list. Do you know of more organizations like these? Please feel free to email me the same and I’ll add them here for the benefit of our readers :). Thanks to Mr. Vallikkannan for forwarding me these links.

Indira Prabhakaran.

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Nov 08 2011

How to find housing before you arrive?

How can I find housing before I arrive?

Finding housing is a difficult task at the best of times. Finding a place to live before you’ve even arrived in Canada will not be easy, but it is not impossible. It is important to keep in mind that what you might consider adequate accommodation in your country of origin might be very different here.

There are a number of ways to start looking for housing before you arrive. Since places can be quite different from how they look in pictures, it is recommended to see the place in person before you make the final decision to rent or buy it.

Send a family member ahead of time
If possible, a family member could arrive 1 – 2 weeks before the rest of your family. This person could stay in a hotel or hostel for that short period and find appropriate accommodation for the rest of your family. Once here, they could access the services listed below, especially settlement agencies.

Housing help centres
Housing help centres help people find affordable housing. Usually it is free to use this service.

Settlement agencies
Settlement agencies provide services to newcomers, including help with finding housing, employment, and access to any other service or information you need to get settled.

Classified Advertisements
Local newspapers usually have advertisements for house renting and buying. Landlords usually place their ads 1 – 2 months before they want someone to move into their property. It’s not a good idea to rent a place without seeing it first in person. However, visiting these ads will give you an idea about the price and availability.

Real Estate Rental Services
Also known as Property Rental Management or Rental Locators. Although they usually work with landlords, some of these companies help tenants find housing. There is usually a fee for this service.

The phonebook (or the “Yellow Pages”) lists real estate rental services.

Many community agencies can help you find information about renting or buying a home. To find help in your area, go to Services Near Me.

Here are a few contacts that can actually help with a temporary accommodation in Ontario, GTA area. Please tell them you are a new immigrant and referred by COSTI.

Inns & Hotels for Newly Arrived Immigrants

1.Downtown, North York and Scarborough
Address: 31 Grange Ave., Toronto M5T 1C6
588 Dundas St. W., Toronto M5T 1H5
112 New Forest Sq., Toronto M1V 2Z8
389 Murray Ross Pky
Tel: 416-898-4221, 416-591-1500, 416-703-9988

Address: Finch & Don Mills
Tel: 416-773-1024, 416-880-9506
Contact: Peter Guo

3.Caihong Yuan
Address:47 Treverton Dr, Toronto M1K 3S5 CA
Tel: 416-994-5678
Contact: Mrs. Lei

Address:79 Seneca Hill Dr., Toronto M2J 2W3 CA
Tel: 416-490-0739
Contact: Mr. Wu & Mrs. Wu

Address:1857 Danforth Ave.
Tel: 416-720-9298, 416-694-1238
Contact: Mr.Li

Address: Finch & Mccowan
Tel: 647-296-6172

Address: Finch & Mccowan
Tel: 416-561-5852, 416-335-4430
Contact: Amy

8.Seven Stars
Address: 1163 Brimley Rd.
Tel: 647-896-3282
Contact: Jack

There are other ways to look for rental housing after you arrive here.

Bulletin Boards
Look in community centres, laundromats, grocery stores and other local businesses. If you are a student, check the boards at college and university housing services.

The advertisement section of major daily newspapers and weekly community newspapers have list rentals. You can read the newspaper for free at public libraries. Many newspapers let you search their classifieds ads online for free. Find your local community newspaper’s website.

Family and Friends
Many people find places to rent through personal contacts. Ask your friends, family, co-workers and others if they know of any places that are available.

Rental Guides
These guides are free. Look for them in boxes on street corners or in store entrances.

Rental Listing Websites
There are many websites that list rentals. Here are some examples and you can use a search engine to find others.

·        Craigslist


·        GSC Rentals


·        Kijiji

·        Real Estate and Rental Listings from the MLS

·        Rent Compass



Rental Agents/Locators
These are private companies that search for housing for you. There is usually a fee for this service

Walk around neighbourhoods that interest you and look for signs that say “For Rent” or “Vacancy” in front of apartment buildings or in house windows. Even if there is no sign, you can ask if any apartments are available or will become available soon. Ask if you can be put on a waiting list.

Good luck for your upcoming move!

Indira Prabhakaran.

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Nov 05 2011


Today, we attended the ‘ TNCSC Diwali / Eid / Halloween celebration 2011′ at Scarborough, Ontario. This was our first celebration kind of thing, after arriving here. We met some great friends and yes, it was good to feel ‘home’, after a couple of months. The party was great and I’m thankful to one of my friends, who introduced us to this event. It’s a great way to network here. Where else can you see such a large gathering of OUR people in Canada, other than gatherings like these? Although this one is Tamils specific, I’m sure every community has an organization like this and they do organize events like this regularly.

Indira Prabhakaran.

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