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New Project Phase
As the Global COA Project Manager, I am delighted to announce that the COA project has entered into a new implementation phase that will be marked by a number of important changes. Citizenship and Immigration Canada has renewed its confidence in IOM and the COA team for a seventeenth continuous year, approving an ambitious project proposal that encompasses four new training locations, bringing the number of permanent COA training sites to a total of 20. In addition to its geographic expansion, the COA project has successfully concluded ground-breaking partnership agreements with Colleges and Institutes Canada and the YMCA of Greater Toronto.

Updates on the COA training sites
COA is proud to launch four new permanent training sites, including two new permanent training sites for Economic immigrants and Family Class immigrants to be established in Nigeria and Ukraine. With regards to refugees, the new permanent regional training site in South Africa will cover the sub-region (Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi, and Zambia) through mobile sessions. COA will also resume its permanent training operation in Thailand, providing orientation to Burmese refugees in the Mae Sot Refugee Settlement. Finally, after the successful resettlement of more than 90,000 Bhutanese to 8 resettlement countries including Canada, COA closed its permanent training site in Damak, Nepal.

Canadian Orientation Abroad - Highlights from 2014-2015
Since its inception in 1998, COA has provided in-person pre-departure orientation services to 188,417 refugees and immigrants bound to Canada. During fiscal year 2014-2015, COA provided services to 14,034 participants in 38 countries and 48 locations, including 9 refugee camps. Click here to see the 2014-2015 Statistical Summary. 

In Focus: Congolese refugees in Kenya
By Lilian Matama and Louise Bélanger - COA Kenya
The Canadian Orientation Abroad (COA) regional site in Nairobi, Kenya, is the second largest refugee training location in the world, providing on-site and mobile training to more than 1,500 refugees every year in over 10 countries and 20 locations in Eastern and Southern Africa. This article focuses on Congolese refugees, one of the largest refugee group found in the sub-region. Read More...
COA opens a new regional training site in Mexico
By Daniela Geloso - COA Mexico
Meet the COA team in Mexico City and hear abour their first pre-departure session, delivered to a group of 13 Federal Skilled Workers on May 20th, 2015. Read More...
Pilot referrals to the Global Experience Ontario (GEO) Program
By Sadia Zarif - COA Pakistan
Since June 2014, COA Pakistan and the COA Management Team work in close collaboration with the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship, Immigration and International Trade in order to provide internationally-trained professionals with pathways to licensing before and upon their arrival in Ontario. This article discusses the outcomes of the pilot referral phase. Read More...
Partnering for the benefits of Economic Immigrants

The Canadian Orientation Abroad (COA) project and the Canadian Immigrant Integration Program (CIIP) are developing a joint initiative that builds on years of experience providing pre-arrival settlement support to Economic Immigrants. Read More...

COA creates a new initiative for Youth Refugees

Canada resettles approximately 3,500 Youth Refugees between the age of 10 and 19 years old every year. Approximately 2,300 of them attend the Canadian Orientation Abroad (COA) session provided by IOM. In partnership with the YMCA of Greater Toronto, COA is gearing up for the start of a new pre-departure initiative to support Youth Refugees. Read More...

Building a regional service hub for refugees and other immigrants in Metro Vancouver
By Immigrant Service Society of British Columbia (ISSofBC)

In a fascinating small world connection and the full circle of life, some former refugee clients who stayed in our existing refugee reception centre, are currently helping ISSofBC to build a $24 million, gold leed, social purpose facility in East Vancouver. Read More...

About Us

Canadian Orientation Abroad (COA) is a project implemented by the IOM and funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).  Visit our website at