Regent Park Centre of Learning: The Community’s Access to Education, Learning and Training Opportunities

“Being a South Asian immigrant in Regent Park is particularly difficult,” says Naznin, a resident. Nazin has faced many of the same hurdles that countless newcomers have experienced upon their arrival to Canada.

Language and communication were areas in which she felt challenged the most. “I took ESL classes in the community, but found the Regent Park Centre of Learning’s courses to be more specific to my needs.” Nazin is one of the many Regent Park residents that availed of the courses at the Centre.

Since its soft opening in June 2010, the Regent Park Centre of Learning has been offering free training courses for community residents ranging civic engagement and leadership to personal and career exploration courses and workshops.

The courses are offered by the Centre’s lead agency, Toronto Centre for Community Learning & Development in partnership with George Brown College, Ryerson University and University of Toronto.

“The Regent Park Centre of Learning will be a source of direction for residents who are looking for opportunities, a place where seamless access to education services can be found, a location where residents will be better able to access a range of education, learning and training opportunities,” says Dr. Michael Dewson, Advisory Committee Chair of the Centre.

The Regent Park Centre of Learning will be a gathering place for existing and new members of this diverse and vibrant community, promoting active citizenry, and link into opportunities for actual participation and engagement; ensuring that learning is relevant, purposeful and accessible to people as part of their everyday lives.

Naznin is very appreciative of the opportunities that have been presented to her through Regent Park Centre of Learning, and hopes to pursue other courses that will lead her to becoming a Settlement Worker. “I would like to be a Settlement Worker in order to help other immigrant women in need and to give back to my community. I hope things will get better for Regent Park. Every community should have a Centre like this, providing educational opportunities for residents. Very inclusive, accessible and engaging.”

The Regent Park Centre of Learning is located at 540 Dundas Street East (at Sackville).