Newcomer Employment Champions

The Newcomer Employment Champions (NEC) program aims to support local employers beyond Cultural Competency Training by giving them the support, resources and practical tools to hire, onboard, and retain newcomers effectively.  

More and more newcomers from around the world are choosing to live and work in Saint John. These new immigrants are often well-educated, highly skilled and experienced. They are a powerful new source of talent for local companies striving to find workers.  

Participating in the NEC program will help employers realize the following benefits

  • Increased Productivity  
  • Increased Morale  
  • Employee Wellness  
  • Employee Retention 
  • Enhanced Customer Experience  
  • Public Recognition  


Finding and retaining talent is a major challenge for many companies. To help meet labour demands, employers are encouraged to expand their talent pool by going beyond their traditional approaches; and to look towards newcomers as a source of untapped potential.  

Many newcomers seeking jobs in Canada have a wealth of training and work experience. In addition, newcomers can bring new ideas and global connections to an organization. However, newcomers face many barriers when trying to access employment. Barriers include unrecognized credentials, lack of Canadian work experience, language competency, and cultural differences. Due to these barriers, some employers may be hesitant to hire newcomers.  

The NEC program was developed to help address employers’ concerns regarding hiring, onboarding, and retaining newcomers. By providing them with best practices, tools, and resources, employers will feel more confident integrating newcomers into their organizations. Some of the information provided is not newcomer specific and may also apply to all employees of an organization.  

Overall, an employer’s profile can be raised when they are recognized as being welcoming and supportive to their employees. This raised profile can help attract top talent, engage and retain existing talent, and lead as an example to other local companies. 

Learn about this strategic partnership between the YMCA Saint John and OSCO Construction Group


Implement best practices in your organization by utilizing these tools and resources.

Free Video Resources for Workplace Inclusion

How to Participate

All employers are invited to participate in the [NEC] program.

A representative will meet with your leadership team to present the program, the best practices, and the tools and resources to support the implementation of the best practices. While we don’t expect companies to implement all the best practices at once, we will be looking for a commitment from all participating employers to identify several best practices to implement in the first year. On a quarterly basis, a representative of the program will meet with your team to review your progress, answer questions, and gather feedback. 

Every year, companies will be nominated for one of three [NEC] awards and will be invited to a special recognition event where participating employers will be celebrated for their achievements. As a participant, you can leverage your involvement in the [NEC] program for recruitment marketing, and to promote your company’s welcoming environment for newcomers 

To participate and for more information, reach out to

Genevieve Sweigard
Newcomer Employment Champions Coordinator

Funded by

This Program is funded by Working NB