Building Welcoming & Equitable Communities

Skills for Change is known for pioneering programs that respond to shifting immigration and workplace trends and lead to employment. The first program, in 1982, was an office training program that successfully led all its first graduates, a group of women from Southeast Asia, into full-time employment. We take pride in our track record and the recognition of our agency within and outside the Greater Toronto Area and province as a leader in services to internationally trained immigrants. We serve 16,000 people annually.  


Our story began in 1982

In 1982, five English as a Second Language teachers identified a need and shared a vision for integrated skills and language training. That vision became Toronto Office Skills, the former name of the agency. As the immigrant/refugee community needs changed, the agency evaluated itself, restructured, and raised funds to acquire a building and what emerged from that process is the agency, as we know it – Skills for Change.

From its inception, Skills for Change assumed a leadership role to address policy issues, undertake public education and research on issues affecting immigrants and refugees. At the same time, we pioneered innovative service models specific to internationally trained professionals.

Now a range of accelerated programs are offered to fit the needs of the people arriving from all parts of the world. Services offered include information and referral, French and English language assessment, English language instruction, integrated language/skills training, employment preparation, business skills, mentoring, entrepreneurship skills, skilled trades and settlement services.

Skills for Change has received the following recognition: Citizenship and Immigration Canada Citation of Citizenship Award; Conference Board of Canada Community Learning Award; and Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration Newcomer Champion Award.


We envision a Canada where every immigrant succeeds.


We provide learning and training opportunities for immigrants and refugees to access and fully participate in the workplace and wider community.




Our primary focus is on our clients, the immigrants and refugees who have come to our communities to create new life for themselves and their families.


We build and maintain relationships that are mutually beneficial for our clients and employers, thereby making a positive contribution to the Canadian economy and broader society.


We engage all stakeholders to produce meaningful results. All staff play a critical role in serving catalyst for the success of our clients.


We deliver quality and excellence in all that we do. We pursue new, pioneering ideas in our efforts to serve both clients and employers.


We respect and value the diversity of our team and those we serve. We behave with integrity, compassion and empathy to ensure all persons are treated with dignity.


We deliver measurable results and create positive impact through our work. We hold ourselves accountable for the promises made in our Vision and Mission.