Filipinos discovered Canada a bit later compared to other nationalities. Despite this, however, the number of Filipinos in the country steadily grew during the past couple of decades. From a mere 800 back in the 1960s, Canada is now home to more than half a million Filipinos.
This number is even increasing fast. In fact, Philippines has now become the biggest source of immigrants in Canada. According to the latest statistics, there are more than 30,000 Filipinos who are approved as permanent Canadian residents every year. In 2012, there were almost 45,000 Filipinos who came to Canada to work and almost 1000 Filipinos who came to the country to study. These figures show a remarkable increase compared to previous statistics.
Why Filipinos Come to Canada
Most Filipinos come to Canada in search of a ‘greener pasture’. The average wage in Canada is very high, so Filipinos are able to send money home – money that they would not find should they stay and work in the Philippines.
There are different jobs available for Filipinos in Canada, and there are various programs that cater to different skill sets. Among the most popular occupations in Canada are those in the healthcare industry – caregivers and nurses. There are programs that are specifically designed for live-in caregivers, and nurses are among the priority in Canada’s federal and provincial immigration programs.
Filipinos have no problem finding jobs in the country because they have a very good command of the English language and are often skilled in various occupations and industries. And because of the great number of Filipino workers in Canada, the Philippines gets more benefits in the form of remittances.
Some Filipinos come to Canada to study (and find work later on). Others leave the Philippines to be with their relatives (those who have already become permanent Canadian residents). The government of Canada has programs that allow relatives of immigrants to come to the country – spouse, children, parents, and even grandparents.
Where Filipinos Go When They Arrive in Canada
There is no one province where Filipinos live once they become permanent Canadian residents – they are widely distributed across the Canadian provinces and territories. The Canadian province with the most number of Filipinos today is Ontario, specifically in the city of Toronto (around 200,000 Filipino immigrants). Another province with a huge number of Filipinos is Manitoba, especially the city of Winnipeg. It is estimated that 1 out of 10 Filipinos in Canada are staying in Winnipeg, so much so that Filipinos are now the largest ethnic minority in this city.
The Future of Filipinos in Canada
The large number of Filipinos in Canada has led to a stronger relationship between the two countries. Filipinos are becoming an integral part of the Canadian society, with some of them even serving in the parliament. And as the number of Filipinos who come to Canada continues to increase, it is expected for the whole Canadian society to continue to evolve as Filipinos become integral part of the country’s history and economy.