The Salvation Army website recently profiled the ARIS project, which is based in Spryfield at the Family Resource Centre on Herring Cove Road. Marie Kettle is a fantastic resource within the community. I’ve quoted part of the entry below. You can find the full entry here.
“Atlantic Refugee & Immigrant Services (ARIS) is a project of The Salvation Army run out of the Spryfield Community Church and Family Resource Centre.
“Basically, we try to help refugees and immigrants who can’t afford to go to a private lawyer and pay the legal fees,” says Marie Kettle, ARIS Settlement Coordinator.
Simply put, ARIS helps newcomers to Canada wade through the complex and sometimes confusing sea of paperwork that comes with immigration issues. This can include making refugee claims, assisting with citizenship applications, humanitarian and compassionate applications and spousal sponsorship applications. The program also helps with more tangible needs like finding temporary shelter and scheduling medical appointments.
ARIS is unlike other programs available to refugees and immigrants in the city that are usually very targeted and require people to fit specific criteria before receiving aid.
“What we offer is a very open and generous program. We don’t turn anyone away and they don’t have to fit into any particular category,” Kettle says.
ARIS began its work as an independent non-profit society, but soon found itself struggling for funding. Having had a relationship with The Salvation Army, the Spryfield Corps offered Kettle free office space to continue her work. After a few months the relationship was cemented and ARIS was brought on as an official project of The Army two years ago.”