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All You Need To Know About Vancouver

Information about Vancouver

 

There are many reasons to move to Vancouver and it’s many surrounding communities. For example, Vancouver has been consistently rated as one of the best cities in the world to live in and the region was also named one of the Top Destinations in Canada in 2014.

If you are new to the city then there still may be a lot of information about Vancouver that you should know!

Did you know that city of Vancouver has the 18th largest population in Canada? We have more than 600,000 people! Vancouver also has strong international relationships and has hosted events, such as the 2010 Winter Olympics and the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup!

DIVERSITY

Gaining information about Vancouver’s diverse population is important in understanding what makes this city so special. Vancouver is one of Canada’s most multicultural cities – close to 52 per cent of people speak a first language other than English.

Vancouver values its multicultural population and believes that “diversity is a source of creativity and strength”. The cultural diversity and inclusiveness that exists in Vancouver is one of the reasons why this is such a popular city.

WEATHER & CLIMATE

Before moving to Vancouver, it’s a good idea to get the correct information about Vancouver’s weather.

Many know Vancouver as the ‘Rainy City’, but believe it or not, Vancouver and it’s surrounding communities rank 9th on the list of rainiest locations in Canada. You can expect far more rain in places like Prince Rupert, Port Alberni, Chilliwack, Abbotsford, Campbell River, Halifax, Sydney, and St. John’s.

Unlike the majority of Canadian cities, you won’t be affected by the harsh winters here. Located between the Pacific Ocean and the Coastal Mountains, Vancouver’s climate is mild and moderate.

The driest months in Vancouver are July and August while the wettest months are November and December. However, the winter months never seem to disappoint in bringing excellent ski and snowboard conditions to the mountains.

Want more information about the weather in Vancouver? Click here!

ATTRACTIONS

If you are new to BC, then you need to get information about Vancouver’s famous attractions!

Want to take a one-of-a-kind walk in Vancouver? Take a walk around the Vancouver Sea Wall and experience breathtaking city, ocean and mountain views!

On a sunny day, take a trip out to Stanley Park! Here you can ride bikes, have a picnic, go to the beach and do many other things!

If you’re looking for a thrill, then visit the famous Capilano Suspension Bridge in North Vancouver. This 140 meter long bridge is suspended seventy meters above the Capilano River. Although extremely safe and secure, this bridge is known for its wobbly movements when you walk across!

If you’re up for a challenge, then you must do the Grouse Grind. This is an intense hike up Grouse Mountain with stunning views once you’ve reached the top. Don’t think you can make it? That’s okay! There’s a gondola to take you up to explore the mountain.

Vancouver’s Chinatown is perfect for anyone looking to explore a new culture. Here you can visit historical buildings, shops, taste delicious food and much more!

As Canada’s fifth largest gallery, the Vancouver art gallery is also a popular attraction. Here, you can view amazing exhibits and outstanding work by both local and international artists.

Vancouver is also known for its outstanding restaurants. With so many options, you might need some help deciding where to dine! Check out the Tourism Vancouver website to help narrow down your search.

If you are interested in getting more information about attractions and things to do in Vancouver then check out the links below.

http://vancouver.ca/parks-recreation-culture/things-to-do.aspx

http://www.hellobc.com/british-columbia/things-to-do.aspx

Languages in Vancouver

Language Vancouver

Take a walk down the streets of Vancouver and you’ll know that many languages are spoken in this city.

In 2011 it was reported that over one-half of Vancouver’s immigrant’s speak two languages? 72.8 per cent of the Vancouver’s immigrant population reported a foreign mother tongue. However, many of these individuals have knowledge of English or French in addition to their first language.

According to First.org, the most common languages spoken in Vancouver are English and Chinese. Other common languages spoken in Vancouver include Punjabi, German, Italian, French, Tagalog (Filipino) and Spanish.

If you are new to Vancouver and English is already your first language consider learning a new language! Learning a foreign language can expand your knowledge, introduce you to a new culture, and eliminate social barriers and so much more!

However, if you are new to Vancouver and English is not your first language then there are many resources, school and opportunities for you to learn the two official languages in Vancouver and Canada: English and French.

THE BENEFITS OF LEARNING ENGLISH

As a newcomer, what are the benefits of learning a new language? Since English is the primary language in the city – in order to feel at home, it is essential to be able to speak, read and write in English.

Having strong skills in the English language will make it easier for you to find a job, succeed in school, access services, communicate with others, integrate into your community, and complete daily activities such as going to a doctor, banking and even going grocery shopping!

If you are a permanent resident in Vancouver, there are many resources provided to help you learn English and/or French. Government-funded classes are free to take but you will need to pay if you are interested in private language languages.

Find out more about classes funded by the Government of Canada.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE RESOURCES

Vancouver is has multiple resources for people wishing to learn a new language. You can learn languages including English, French, Cantonese, Chinese, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Punjabi, Spanish as well as many others.

If you want to find out where, when and how you can learn or a new language or simply improve your existing knowledge, the City of Vancouver website can help!

Here, you can find either free or affordable classes, programs and drop-in activities, tailored to your preference of language, age-group, level, day, time, location and much more! The language classes you can find through this portal are located across the entire Vancouver area and are available to all.

There are classes available for learning or improving English, French, Spanish, and Mandarin. These classes are available to all individuals beginning from the age of one. So, not only can you learn a new language but also so can your children!

If you would rather learn a new language on your own or want to simply gain additional knowledge, the Vancouver Public Library has resources available in 54 different languages.

The library staff can also help you find information in the language you are looking for. Visit http://www.vpl.ca for more information!

Another resource available to Vancouver newcomers wishing to learn a new language is the LISTN website. LISTN (Language Instruction and Training Network) is the provincial branch for LINC (Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada).

LISTN’s mission is to “to help their clients achieve language and resettlement goals by providing leadership, communication networks, and resources”.

Here you can find a list of language services in your area.

Happy Learning!

How To Open New Doors With An Elevator Pitch

I’ve heard of the elevator pitch before, but didn’t like the idea of ‘selling myself’ at networking events. I’m not that good at tooting my own horn, so to speak. So, why would I even entertain the idea now?

I went to a ‘Women in Business’ networking event recently. I had no trouble making conversation with various women, but I wasn’t prepared for succinctly answering questions about my occupation, my career direction, or myself; the entire purpose of the evening was to do just this. People, in particular events, want to know what makes you stand out, what you bring to the table, and why you’re interesting. It’s time that I learn the art of the 30-second pitch.

What is the 30-second pitch?

An elevator pitch, or a 30 second pitch, is a short summary to quickly and simply define you, your experiences and your direction.

How do you make a 30-second pitch?

  1. Introduce yourself – share your name, your education, and your current employment (if applicable)
  2. List your:
    • Major accomplishments or skills: use your LinkedIn profile and write down a few key points of why you’re great. Include your skills & accomplishments in a way that is meaningful to the person you’re talking to, leaving out irrelevant points. The goal is to be as succinct as possible.
    • Passions: what excites you in a day? What do you wish you could spend the rest of your days doing?
  3. Share your goals of where you want to go: what do you want to do, where do you want to go, what are you looking for?
  4. Share a story if you can. People create stronger associations with stories than they do with a sales pitch.
  5. Practice, practice, practice:
    • Make sure you’ve got it down to 30 seconds. Practice with your family and colleagues and ask for feedback. Practice until it feels and sounds natural and shows your real personality. In other words, you should feel and sound like this is a true reflection of you.
    • Consider your body language (posture, eye contact, volume, tone, facial expression, clothing, handshake) and how it impacts your message.
    • Keep it conversational. Use clear language – not everyone understands the company jargon. Pretend you’re trying to explain it to your parents.
  6. Try it: See if you feel comfortable and revise again as necessary.
  7. Ask for guidance: if you’re interested in learning more about an organization, or a person, ask if they can recommend words of wisdom for someone trying to break into their industry or organization. If you’re comfortable, ask for a card and follow up with that individual with more questions.

When do you use it?

Networking event
Career Fair
An interview: tell me about yourself
Professional organizations/associations when asked to introduce yourself

Last words

You need to keep the pitch real. It has to match who you are as a person. It cannot come across as a sales pitch. You are telling people, in 30 seconds or less, the essence of you. It should feel natural and you should feel confident when delivering it. If you don’t feel confident, go back and revise until you do.
ElevatorPitchCartoon

Give me an example!

Hi. I’m Andrea. I currently work as a social media strategist for NewToBC. I created the social media channels used by NewToBC to promote awareness of services available through BC public libraries and immigrant serving organizations that assist newcomers in their transition to life in Canada. From inception, I have gained approximately 1500 Facebook followers, 370 Twitter followers, and over 3000 views on our blog. What I love about social media is finding the right content that resonates with our followers that is timely, relevant and informative. I would love to learn more about how your company uses social media to engage with people about their needs and what tools you use to do this.
*If the conversation went well, I would then ask for a business card to connect with them at a later date when we both have more time.

The Burnaby Public Library has a wealth of resources on this subject. Why not pop over to their catalogue to see what titles they have?