2016 Diversity Awards

Diversity Award Recipients

Organization Category – Riasat Ali Khan Diversity Award:


DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society 
DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society, the largest immigrant serving agency in Surrey offers numerous programs to newcomers to Canada. In particular, DIVERSEcity was nominated as a result of their work to support vulnerable immigrant and refugee newcomers through programs and services such as the Moving Ahead Program, First Steps Early Years Refugee Program, Invitation to Know Each Other Program, as well as campaigns such as the Refugee Support Fund and Bundle Up. Through these programs and services, DIVERSEcity has provided significant leadership and promoted innovation within the settlement and diversity sectors in BC.

Individual Category – Service Recognition Staff Award:


Bayron Figueroa, Settlement Orientation Services (SOS)
Bayron Figueroa has worked with Settlement Orientation Services (SOS) for 22 years providing Latin-American refugees and refugee claimants support. Bayron helped design and run several HIV education programs aimed at the Latin-American LGBTQ population and also created a peer navigator program for Latin-American refugee claimants – the mentorship model was later adapted to support immigrants. Through his amazing contributions to the sector and SOS, Bayron has truly become a leader in building welcoming inclusive communities.

Individual Category – Service Recognition Volunteer Award:


Margot and Denny Brunt, Multicultural &  Immigrant Services Association of North Vancouver Island (MISA)
Husband and wife team Margot and Denny Brunt have worked together in providing MISA with strategic leadership and grassroots support for over 8 years. Both Margot and Denny have contributed to MISA and its clients in many ways through numerous programs, services and events. A recent program they created, SAGE (Seniors, Aspiring, Gathering, and Enabling), has become a key driver to establishing community connections. SAGE provides seniors with the opportunity to learn about technology and use technology to build community and social connections. Through their hard work and dedication at MISA, Margot and Denny have fostered and continue to lead in creating inclusive and collaborative communities.

Diversity Award Nominees:

Organization Category – Riasat Ali Khan Diversity Award:

Pacific Community Resources Society (PCRS)
Pacific Community Resources Society (PCRS) is an award winning, accredited non-profit organization that has provided services to vulnerable people across the Lower Mainland and Fraser valley for over 30 years. PCRS was nominated for their innovative approach to the Moving Ahead Program. The Moving Ahead Program is unique in its delivery to youth and plays an important role in youth engagement. Specialized Youth Outreach Settlement Workers support vulnerable immigrant and refugee youth in their first language and through culturally appropriate individualized support with the goal of supporting their successful integration. Through the youths’ involvement in this program, youth are able to take active roles as leaders and help staff in the development of workshops in which they would like to participate in. Innovative ideas from youth are strongly encouraged as they are provided support to ensure their ideas are being implemented.

Pacific Immigrant Resources Society (PIRS)
Pacific Immigrant Resources Society (PIRS) empowers immigrant and refugee women and children to participate fully in Canadian life through neighbourhood-based programs. The programs at PIRS enrich lives, build community, foster involvement and create a sense of belonging to break the patterns of social isolation and poverty using a trauma informed practice approach. With their programs PIRS addresses newcomer concerns such as:

  • How can my learning environment meet my cultural needs as an immigrant woman?
  • Where will my preschool children go while I am in class? How do I help my preschool children learn English and prepare for school when I need to learn as well?
  • Who will look after my baby while I am in class?
  • How do I navigate the transportation system to attend class so far from home?

Vancouver & Lower Mainland Multicultural Family Support Services (VLMFSS)
Vancouver & Lower Mainland Multicultural Family Support Services Society (VLMFSS) is a one-of-a-kind organization that has been providing culturally sensitive services to immigrant, refugee and visible minority women and children facing the challenges of domestic violence since 1991. Counselling, support, advocacy and referral services are provided in nearly 24 languages.

Individual Category – Service Recognition Staff Award:

Angelika Valchar, Central Vancouver Island Multicultural Society (CVIMS)
Angelika currently the Employment Service Manager at the Central Vancouver Island Multicultural Society (CVIMS) has worked in the Settlement sector for over 16 years.  Angelika uses creative approaches in service delivery to customize each client’s support package, bringing together multiple program resources, community partners and training opportunities to assist clients in fulfilling their goals and achieving success in their career path. For the past few years, Angelika has taken this approach in assisting CVIMS in the development of a Job seekers training course module, curriculum and several new programs.