ISIS was created by the merger of Halifax Immigrant Learning Centre (HILC) and Metropolitan Immigrant Settlement Association (MISA) on December 1, 2009. MISA was established in 1980 and HILC in 1988.
Over the years, HILC and MISA helped immigrants in settlement, ESL, employment, and business through a variety of programs. Together we assisted many different groups of people: Vietnamese refugees in the 1980s, Middle Eastern business people, former Yugoslavian professionals and Kosovars in the 1990s, Iranian and Filipino provincial nominees, and Afghan refugees in the last decade. In 2009, after many years of working closely, MISA and HILC became ISIS to create better services for clients.
ISIS works to adapt to global, national, and provincial situations – which can change significantly. Our experience has become expertise; ISIS has a clear and strong vision for the integration of new immigrants. With this vision, ISIS has created and designed many new services in direct response to client needs.
ISIS receives continuing funding from many different government departments, both federal and provincial. ISIS was the first organization in Atlantic Canada to deliver most of the current Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) settlement programs, including:
- Refugee Resettlement Assistance Program (RAP)
- Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC)
- Canadian Language Benchmarks Assessment (CLBA)
- Enhanced Language Training (ELT).
ISIS has also delivered programs and services funded by:
- Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA)
- Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC)
- Health Canada
- Nova Scotia Office of Immigration (NSOI)
- Nova Scotia Economic Development
- United Way of Halifax/Dartmouth.
ISIS is a leader in the settlement sector in Nova Scotia. We have been a key member in the Immigrant Settlement Agencies of Metro Halifax and in the Atlantic Region Association of Immigrant Settlement Agencies. In 2003, we proposed and coordinated the Nova Scotia Immigration Partnership Conference, and in 2005 we advised the government of Nova Scotia on its Immigration Strategy. Over many years, ISIS has been the acknowledged expert in settlement.
Our expertise stems from working with many partner organizations to deliver a wide variety of innovative services and programs. We have led the way in providing distance/online English as a Second Language (ESL) and pre-employment services to immigrants across Nova Scotia and around the world. We have developed new models for service delivery in small centres around Nova Scotia. These models have been recognized and presented at conferences at both the national and international level.