Participatory community Action Research process addressing employment integration of internationally trained professionals (ITPs) in Canada
Keywords:, internationally trained professionals (ITPs), Community-Based Participatory Action Research (CBPAR), labour market integration, community action research process (CARP), experiential learning, and inter-sectoral collaborations.
This paper describes the use of a community action research process (CARP) to understand the lived experiences of internationally trained professionals’ (ITPs) unemployment and underemployment in a Community-Based Participatory Action Research (CBPAR) project in Edmonton, Canada. Through a mixed methods design, members of six ethno-cultural communities discussed their challenges, opportunities, and prospects for labour market integration; particularly within the context of an economic uncertainty and downturn as they transition and settle in the western Canadian city of Edmonton. The CARP was utilized through several stages involving a robust recruitment and data collection strategy to facilitate community dialogue about barriers and facilitators impacting ITPs’ employment integration, and engage community members in providing solutions to support current ITPs. The CARP stimulated stakeholders to become more cognizant of the contextual issues impacting ITPs, while taking active roles. Key features of the evaluation process focused on the following: communication patterns, engagement process, applicability of recruitment strategies, effectiveness of mobilization strategies and prospects for community engagement. The CARP proved to be an effective strategy for engagement and facilitating inter-sectoral collaborations across a variety of key stakeholders.
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