Are you also among those who dream of not only coming to Canada, but of also achieving their career and business aspirations here?
Here’s an inspiring story of a Canadian permanent resident who started in Canada as a temporary foreign worker, but soon managed to achieve one of her aspirations of becoming a licensed immigration consultant and a businesswoman here in Canada. This story was part of our International Women’s Day celebration.
I came to Saskatchewan in Canada in 2014 as a temporary foreign worker. I was at the peak of my profession at the time of my application to Canada, being a training officer based at the main office of a giant and popular fast food chain in the Philippines. I took my chance to apply as a food counter attendant of a popular coffee shop in Canada as I was nearing the age limit of applicants that can still be hired.
I left the Philippines with sadness because I left alone, leaving my children with the care of my in-laws. But I carried with me a mountain full of hopes and dreams. Like the rest of us who went to Canada, I went through the ordeals of living alone where there were many sleepless nights brought about by homesickness and the biting coldness of harsh winters. In many nights, I cried myself to sleep. I endured cleaning toilets, dumping heavy garbage outside in the freezing coldness, walking towards home in deep snow after doing grocery errand in heavy backpack.
Like the rest of us who went to Canada, I went through the ordeals of living alone where there were many sleepless nights brought about by homesickness and the biting coldness of harsh winters.
From Temporary Foreign Worker to Permanent Resident
I had the chance to apply for permanent residence (PR) in 2016 through the kindness of my employer who gave me a permanent job offer. While in Saskatchewan, I was able to help some of my friends prepare their application for their PR, who eventually became permanent residents themselves in Canada. With the Lord’s grace, I got my PR in 2018, along with my children who travelled by themselves to Canada.
I moved to Toronto a few months thereafter, soon after I learned that my mom was ill, who eventually passed away after a month. After I tried applying and working for a few jobs here and there, I came across the Immigration Consultant diploma program that was offered in a college located in Yonge and Finch streets in Toronto. I enrolled in the program and took the evening classes, while I went to work at a restaurant in the mornings.
After I finished my program, I prepared to review for the licensing exam where I attended intensive review classes and sought mentorship from one of my instructors.
I was hired as a Legal Assistant in Toronto and worked for a lawyer who was practicing Family law, right after I took the licensing exam. While working in the office in the daytime, I was hired as an instructor to teach evening classes in the college where I finished my Immigration Consultant diploma program. It was difficult to manage the two jobs at that time, so I had to leave my job as an instructor.
I was eventually let go in my job as a legal assistant, and it was at that time I decided to open my own business, with a partner, as a licensed Immigration Consultant in Canada.
Each one of us runs our own race, in our own pace. But one thing remains indubitable: we will all reach our destination.
Becoming a Businesswoman with the Passion to Help Others
At the moment, I, and my partner assist immigration applications for clients to Canada. We work with the resource of a network of licensed consultants who share the same passion. They say that the industry we chose to work for is more than a profession — it is a vocation. At the end of the day, it is in helping people achieve their dream of coming to Canada that brings selfless fulfillment.
Life in Canada for me was never easy. I went through the storms, the thorns. I wept at my low and heartbreaking moments. I celebrated my joys and my small victories. I have come to believe that some of us may have achieved their goal earlier than the others. Some may still have been in the ascending stage. Well, guess what? Each one of us runs our own race, in our own pace. But one thing remains indubitable: we will all reach our destination.
What will tell the difference is our very own decision — that if we want to make it, then WE WILL.
To all the women in the world, celebrate the truth that we are all empowered to rise above the challenges in this life. It is all in our very own beautiful hands.
About the Author
Anna Maria A. Nones is an Immigration Consultant registered under ICCRC (Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council). She is a Co-Founder and Director at FlyNorth Immigration Consulting Services; commissioner for Taking Affidavits at the Province of Ontario; and member of CAPIC (Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants). She is also licensed under the FWRISA (Foreign Worker Recruitment and Immigration Services Act) of Saskatchewan;