Celebrating 40 years over 40 days!

MOSAIC is forty this year! After four decades of community building and facilitating meaningful participation of newcomers in Canadian society, we have many milestones, videos, and stories to share.

We are commemorating MOSAIC’s 40th anniversary with “40 Days of Celebration”, which begins on Labour Day, September 5 and concludes with our annual fundraising gala – Festival MOSAIC – on October 14.

Please explore our celebration below. Each day, we will reveal another piece of nostalgia in the form of a compelling video, vintage photo, fascinating fact, or invitation to an open house!

Visit this page daily for the newest update, or join us on Twitter and FaceBook for a quick link to this page. Like what we’re doing? Please post a comment below!

Thank You to the MOSAIC Community!

We take stock as we celebrate this milestone anniversary and recognize that our success and our growth over 40 years has been the result of contributions by many individuals, partners, funders and supporters. We wouldn’t be where we are today without the passion and investment of our stakeholder community!

A big thank you and we hope we’ll see you at one of our Open House events, or at Festival MOSAIC when we will raise a toast in celebration!

Click to below explore our 40 days!

Join us in celebrating 40 Days of MOSAIC’s 40th Anniversary! Check out the video to learn about MOSAIC, our services and hear from clients.

MOSAIC – Multi-lingual Orientation Service Association for Immigrant Communities – became a non-profit society in 1976, and was formally registered as a charity in 1978.

Click here to read more!

Three MOSAIC clients share their stories in this vintage video from 1992, with footage of MOSAIC’s offices and staff.

What did past premier of BC, Ujjal Dosanjh, do for MOSAIC clients in the 1970s?

Click here to find out!

Roxana Aune was a Settlement Worker at MOSAIC from 1972-1989, having worked with one of the founding organizations which eventually formed MOSAIC in 1976! Ms. Aune shares her thoughts about the early years and MOSAIC’s humble beginnings in this video.

MOSAIC was the first immigrant-serving organization in Western Canada to formally launch an officially- funded employment program. The MOSAIC Immigrant Youth Job Corps Program (developed in conjunction with, and funded by Canada Employment) helped to establish the organization’s Employment Programs division, which then incorporated the Employment Orientation and Job Placement program, as well as the Bilingual Employment Orientation for Immigrant Women later that same year. Today, MOSAIC is the largest immigrant-serving organization provider of employment services in British Columbia. Now see where we’re at! http://bit.ly/2cwEsdY
MOSAIC established its Human Rights Award in 1982. Do you recognize the first recipient? Learn more.
Governor General Michaelle Jean came to MOSAIC during the organization’s 30th Anniversary Year.
September 12 - Tweet Photo
Staff and Stakeholders interviewed at the 2012 AGM reflect on MOSAIC’s contributions to clients and the community, and share personal thoughts about working with newcomers.

Volunteerism has been an essential component of MOSAIC’s growth and success over 40 years.  In the early 70’s, the two agencies which united to form MOSAIC in 1976 was staffed predominantly by volunteers.  After MOSAIC registered as a non-profit society, the organization’s translations and interpretations services alone continued to attract approximately 400 volunteers yearly.

Today, hundreds of volunteers continue to participate and contribute to the success of MOSAIC.  Volunteers have contributed over 10,000 hours each year in a variety of roles including the following:

  • Work and Culture Mentors
  • Language Centre Assistants
  • Event Assistants
  • Administration
  • Committees and Training Groups
This video was created to bring awareness to the loneliness and isolation that some immigrant seniors experience. Participants in this video include members of MOSAIC’s Seniors Club.

An Open House is being held today at 304-2730 Commercial Drive – MOSAIC’s Vancouver Language Centre! From 10am-Noon, visitors can take tours, and be treated to singing by the children from the Childminding Centre. Snacks and beverages will be provided. Click here to hear from a student who is learning English at this location.
In 2014, MOSAIC launched I Belong, a project which addressed the needs and gaps in services for the LGBTQ immigrant community. Today, the unique program is still going strong. The video here was created by program participants.

In 1988 MOSAIC held its first major fundraising initiative: Night of 100 Dinners. Hundreds of people dined in private homes and restaurants. MOSAIC’s Executive Director at the time, Vera Radyo, reminisced that she and a few board members cooked a dinner in her home and people paid $25 each to dine there. Guests included the Mayor of Vancouver, Gordon Campbell! The initiative raised $8000 for MOSAIC.
MOSAIC has provided interpretation and translation services since its inception. Initially services were provided by more than 350 volunteers, until 1987 when translation services became a social enterprise. Interpretation services remained as a volunteer service until it also transitioned into a fee-for-service in 1990. Today, the social enterprise is one of Canada’s leading interpretation and translation businesses. Vera Radyo, MOSAIC Executive Director from 1981-1992 talks about the rationale for the changes.

In 1986, MOSAIC established the Settlement Language Training Program for immigrant women, which included child-minding services. Today, MOSAIC provides language training to over 1000 newcomers at any given time, and offers child-minding services at instruction centres in Vancouver, Burnaby, and North Vancouver. Click here to learn more.
An Open House is being held at 5902 Kingsway in Burnaby! Come by between 10am – 1pm for client activities, snacks and beverages. MOSAIC opened its first location in Burnaby in 2008 and today there are eight Burnaby sites where clients can access services. In 2014, the Burnaby Board of Trade honoured MOSAIC as a finalist in its Awards for Excellence.
You’re invited to MOSAIC’s Annual General Meeting today at 5:30 p.m., VanDusen Botanical Gardens, 5251 Oak Street, Vancouver. Premier Mike Harcourt spoke at MOSAIC’s Annual General Meeting in 1994, held at VanDusen Gardens.

In 2009, MOSAIC opened the Newcomers’ Centre for Children and Families as a partner on “The Early Years Refugee Project”, intended to minimize the impact of trauma on refugee families with children aged 0-5 years. The Centre was featured amongst the federal immigration department’s list of “best practices” in settlement services. The centre has worked with over 230 families since 2009. Click here to learn more.
Dr. Kes Chetty served as a dedicated member of MOSAIC’s Board of Directors from 1989 until his passing in 1991. His friends and colleagues posthumously established the Kes Chetty Scholarship Fund which is administered by MOSAIC. Each year since 1992, a MOSAIC client who is pursuing further education is a recipient of scholarship funds. Below: 2015 recipient Simran Sarwara.

Gilllian Chetty presents Kes Chetty Award to Simran Sarwara in 2015

Festival MOSAIC is the organization’s annual Fundraising Gala. Here are highlights from the 2015 event! Our 40 Days Celebration will conclude at 2016 Festival MOSAIC – tickets are now on sale – click here for more info!

MOSAIC was accredited by CARF in 2010 after two-year process to meet standards. Click here to learn more!
It’s Open House today at our Highgate location in Burnaby! Visit us from 2-5 pm, 310-7155 Kingsway Avenue to learn about Moving Ahead, our nationally-acclaimed program which works with refugees. If you can’t come by, check out this video to hear from a client about our work with refugees at this location!
Since 2011, MOSAIC has staged an annual youth conference called Voyages in collaboration with KPU and National Victims of Crime Awareness Week. Voyages is a full day conference for youth aged 13-24 and covers issues of victimization including bullying, family violence and sexual exploitation. MOSAIC coordinators for the program were invited to Ottawa in 2014 to share details of the unique forum with other youth -oriented service providers during the National Victims of Crime Awareness Week. Check out this video from the 2015 Voyages conference to learn more.

It’s Open House today at our Brentwood Language Centre from Noon to 1 p.m. Drop by to 101-1899 Willingdon Avenue and meet MOSAIC language instructors and students. If you can’t come by, you might enjoy hearing from one of our students. click here!
An Open House is being held today at 1720 Grant Street – MOSAIC’s main office site! Drop in from to learn more about MOSAIC. Snacks and refreshments will be provided.
In 1996, MOSAIC led a 4-day “Camp In” at Victoria Park to protest new legislation and stand in solidarity with refugees who faced a mandatory 3-month residency requirement before being eligible for financial assistance. With the highly publicized stand, and ongoing advocacy, the province exempted refugees from this legislation four months later. Here’s a first-hand account from one of the organizers:

MOSAIC participates in over 50 community fairs and events annually to share information about programs and services and volunteers have always been a big help in executing events.
MOSAIC’s annual job fair has become one of Vancouver’s biggest hiring events with more than 50 employers onsite who are recruiting new staff. Check out the video from MOSAIC’s 5th Annual Job and Career Fair in 2015.

Open House today at MOSAIC’s Newcomers’ Centre in Burnaby, 7009 Kingsway from 10:30am – 1:30 pm. Drop by to learn about the comprehensive programs and services available for refugee families.

Open House today at Northeast Work BC Employment Centre, operated by MOSAIC and partners. Drop by 312-2555 Commercial Drive from 3-5 p.m. to learn about the resources available for all jobseekers who are BC residents. MOSAIC has been the lead operator of the NE Work BC Employment Services Centre since 2012, and is the only immigrant-serving organization in BC to manage a Work BC site. Partners at this location are: ACCESS, BC Centre for Ability, Frog Hollow Neighbourhood House, Kiwassa Neighbourhood House, and La Boussole.

Former BC Premier Ujjal Dosanjh and wife Raminder Dosanjh served separately on MOSAIC’s Board of Directors in the late 70s and early 90s. Here’s what they had to say about their experiences!

Open House today at MOSAIC’s Surrey office. Drop by 200-7134 King George Blvd. from 2-4 pm to learn about MOSAIC programs and services. The Surrey office houses the staff for our Settlement Online Pre-Arrival Program (SOPA) – BC’s only online settlement service for overseas clients who have been pre-approved for entry to Canada. Click here to hear about SOPA from a client. Surrey is also home to the Surrey Project for Refugee Families-which offers unique assistance for the entire family.
In early 1990, MOSAIC recognized that understanding and the ability to communicate effectively with diverse cultures would foster greater harmony and would help prevent discrimination. By 1993, the organization had developed the Cross-Cultural/Anti-Racism Education Workshop Training which provided assessment and customized training for managers of groups such as labour unions, teachers, social workers and community groups.

Today, this program has been replaced with Intercultural Competency Training, which blends on-line components with a face-to-face workshop. The fee-for-service training sessions is part of “MOSAIC Works”, a branch of the Language Centre. IC Training has been delivered to clients such as language schools, and organizations like the David Suzuki Foundation and the Emily Carr University of Art and Design. Click here to learn more.

Learn more about MOSAIC from staff and clients in this video from 2015!

MOSAIC has had five iterations of logos over the past 40 years. Check them out!






After 30 years at 1720 Grant Street, MOSAIC will move its headquarters in 2017 to the Collingwood community. The City of Vancouver is providing MOSAIC with a new 25,000 sq.ft. facility at Wall Centre-Central Park at Boundary Road off Kingsway.


MOSAIC’s Workplace Connections Mentoring Program offers the opportunity to expand your professional network, gain accreditation, and hone your understanding of the local workplace culture.

MOSAIC led the 2-year research project Preventing and Reducing Violence Against Women and Girls in the Name of Honour which concluded in 2015. Materials released as a result of the project include this 30 second public service announcement to bring awareness to this issue.

Our big day! Please join us as we bring together worldwide traditions in the form of multi-ethnic art, entertainment, music, and food, all the while allowing newcomers to share their journeys of integration.

Please click here for more information and to buy tickets!