The Immigrant Welcome Centre hosted its very first virtual annual General meeting recently.
One of the highlights of the evening was the presentation of the 2020 Immigrant Welcome Centre Ambassador Award to Brenda Wagman. This award recognizes a community member or partner in the North Vancouver Island region who demonstrates exceptional leadership qualities in creating an environment that welcomes and includes all newcomers, acknowledging their diversity, humanity and value.
Wagman has been an active long-time member and volunteer of the Immigrant Welcome Centre.
“When I came to Campbell River from Ottawa approximately 15 years ago, I was immediately impressed and inspired by the generous spirit of most everyone I met and the remarkable energy in the community for bringing about positive change,” she said, upon receiving the award. “I knew right away that I wanted to be part of that momentum.”
Wagman’s career in Campbell River started with becoming the Success by 6 co-ordinator, working with the community to give our youngest children a good start in life. After leaving that position, she decided at age 60 to return to school to pursue an academic foundation for her passion to increase collaboration in the non-profit sector and subsequently graduated with a master of arts in community development from University of Victoria. Part-way through, Wagman was employed by Campbell River Family Services to develop and co-ordinate the Better at Home program to assist seniors and elders in the community for the program’s first five years.
These life-changing experiences lead Wagman to volunteer with a number of local coalitions including Campbell River Social Planning Committee, Campbell River Literacy Now, Active Campbell River, Community Addictions Dialogue and Action Coalition, StreetReach Network, and joining the Board of Directors of the Campbell River Child Care Society which continues to this day.
The support and participation of volunteers like Brenda is important to the Immigrant Welcome Centre and the organization takes great pride in all of the volunteers who dedicate their time serving the community.
The Immigrant Welcome Centre specializes in settlement services for newcomers to Canada. They are experts in immigrant services since 1992 and offer their services in the Comox Valley, Campbell River and the North Island. For more information about services and the programs that they provide please call 250-830-0171 (Campbell River), 250-338-6359 (Comox Valley).