GuidelinesSaskatchewan Opens Immigration Pathway for Families: Apply Before July 31, 2024

Saskatchewan Opens Immigration Pathway for Families: Apply Before July 31, 2024

Are you considering immigrating to Saskatchewan, Canada with your family in July 2024? Saskatchewan is an attractive destination for immigrants, offering a high quality of life, strong economy, welcoming communities, and beautiful natural landscapes.

With the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP), skilled workers and their families have a pathway to obtain Canadian permanent residence in this prairie province.If immigrating to Saskatchewan is your goal, it’s important to start the process well in advance.

With the SINP, you’ll want to get your application submitted before the July 31, 2024 deadline to be considered for nomination this year. Here’s an overview of what you need to know about immigrating to Saskatchewan with your family.

Why Choose Saskatchewan?

Saskatchewan Opens Immigration Pathway for Families: Apply Before July 31, 2024

Saskatchewan is a great place to build a new life in Canada. Some highlights of living in this province include:

  • Strong, diverse economy – Saskatchewan has a robust economy based on natural resources, agriculture, manufacturing and services. It boasts the highest employment rate in Canada.
  • Affordable cost of living – Housing costs, in particular, are much more affordable in Saskatchewan compared to Canada’s larger cities. The average home price is around $350,000 in major centers like Regina and Saskatoon.
  • Friendly, welcoming communities – Saskatchewan is known for its community spirit and small-town charm, even in its cities. Newcomers often comment on how quickly they feel at home here.
  • Beautiful outdoors – Those who love nature will appreciate Saskatchewan’s scenic lakes, forests, rolling prairies and dazzling northern lights. With over 100,000 lakes, it’s perfect for outdoor activities.
  • Educational opportunities – Saskatchewan is home to top-ranked universities and colleges, offering quality education for families with children.

SINP: Pathway to Canadian Permanent Residence

For skilled workers, the most common route to immigrate to Saskatchewan is through the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP). Through the SINP, the province can nominate immigrants who have the skills and experience needed in Saskatchewan’s labor market.

Some key SINP categories include:

  • International Skilled Worker: For workers who have a job offer in Saskatchewan or work experience in an in-demand occupation
  • Saskatchewan Experience: For workers who are already working in Saskatchewan and graduates of Saskatchewan post-secondary institutions
  • Entrepreneur and Farm: For those who want to start a business or farm in Saskatchewan

To be considered for most SINP categories, the first step is submitting an Expression of Interest (EOI) profile to the SINP. You’ll be scored based on factors like age, work experience, education and language skills. The highest-scoring candidates are then invited to apply for a provincial nomination. Those nominated can then apply to the federal government for Canadian permanent residence.

How to Qualify for SINP

Each SINP category has its own list of eligibility criteria, but some key requirements you’ll likely need include:

  • At least one year of skilled work experience
  • Minimum language skills in English or French
  • Proof of education, often a degree, diploma or certificate
  • Proof of settlement funds to support your family
  • A connection to Saskatchewan, such as a job offer, work experience, or education in the province

You don’t necessarily need a job offer to qualify. The SINP has an Occupation In-Demand sub-category that allows workers to qualify based on work experience in occupations that are in high demand in Saskatchewan. The eligible occupations can change regularly based on labor market needs.

Improving Your Chances

If you want to increase your likelihood of successfully immigrating through the SINP, there are a few things you can do:

  • Boost your EOI score. Since the SINP uses a points-based EOI system, anything you can do to increase your score will help. This could mean improving your language test results, gaining more skilled work experience, or completing another educational credential.
  • Consider studying in Saskatchewan. International graduates of Saskatchewan post-secondary institutions have their own dedicated SINP sub-category. Studying in the province can also help you build other ties and make you a stronger candidate overall.
  • Build ties to Saskatchewan. Having a connection to the province, especially skilled work experience, can make you a more attractive candidate. The SINP awards more points to those with high-skilled work experience in Saskatchewan.
  • Explore other immigration options. Express Entry and the federal skilled worker pathway may be good options if you have skilled work experience from abroad. Saskatchewan also has a dedicated stream for entrepreneurs and farmers.

Bringing Your Family

One of the major benefits of immigrating through the SINP is the ability to bring your spouse or common-law partner and dependent children with you to Canada. They’ll be included on your application for permanent residence.

To include family members, you’ll need to prove your relationship to them. For a spouse, this usually means providing a marriage certificate.

For a common-law partner, you need to demonstrate you’ve lived together continuously for at least 12 months. Children must be under 22 and not married or in a common-law relationship.

You’ll also need to demonstrate you have enough settlement funds to support your family when you arrive in Canada. As of 2024, the minimum amount for a family of four is around $27,000 CAD.

The Application Process

Applying to the SINP is a multi-step process. First, you’ll need to create an online account and submit your EOI profile. If you’re invited to apply, you’ll have 60 days to submit your complete application to the SINP, including all supporting documents.

If approved, you’ll receive a nomination certificate from the SINP. You’ll need this certificate to apply for permanent residence to the federal government, through Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). You’ll have up to 6 months to submit your permanent residence application after receiving your nomination.

The IRCC will conduct health, criminality and security checks on you and your family members. If approved, you’ll receive confirmation of permanent residence and can make arrangements to move to Saskatchewan. The whole process, from EOI to permanent residence, can take around 2 years, so it’s important to get started well in advance of when you want to immigrate.

Arriving in Saskatchewan

Once you have your permanent resident status, you can make the move to Saskatchewan. You’ll want to arrange for temporary accommodations for your first few weeks. You can stay in a hotel or Airbnb while you search for a more permanent home to rent or purchase.Some of the first things you’ll need to do include:

There are many immigrant settlement agencies across Saskatchewan that can help you navigate the process of settling into your new life. They can assist with things like finding housing, enrolling in language classes, accessing employment services, and connecting with your new community.Some of the main settlement agencies include:

  • Regina Open Door Society
  • Saskatoon Open Door Society
  • Prince Albert Multicultural Council
  • Moose Jaw Multicultural Council

Working in Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan has a thriving and diverse economy with opportunities across a range of industries. Some of the largest sectors include agriculture, mining, manufacturing, and services.

In particular, Saskatchewan is a world leader in agricultural production, known for crops like wheat, canola, lentils and chickpeas. The province also has significant potash and uranium mining operations. In the manufacturing sector, food processing and agricultural equipment manufacturing are major employers. Some of the most in-demand occupations in Saskatchewan include:

  • Nurses
  • Truck drivers
  • Cooks
  • Welders
  • Accountants
  • Software engineers
  • Agricultural workers

Many immigrants choose to settle in Saskatchewan’s larger urban centers, like Regina, Saskatoon, Prince Albert and Moose Jaw, where job opportunities tend to be more plentiful. However, smaller communities across the province are also eager to attract newcomers to fill labor gaps.

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Pursuing Higher Education

If you’re planning to pursue post-secondary studies in Saskatchewan, you have several excellent options. The province is home to two major universities:

  • University of Saskatchewan (USask): Located in Saskatoon, USask is one of Canada’s top research universities. It offers a wide range of undergraduate and graduate degree programs.
  • University of Regina (U of R): Based in the provincial capital of Regina, the U of R is known for programs in areas like business, engineering, and journalism.

Saskatchewan also has a network of technical colleges, with campuses across the province, including:

These colleges offer certificate and diploma programs in high-demand fields like trades, technology, business and health care. They can be a more affordable and quicker path to employment compared to university.International students can often work part-time while studying and may be eligible for a post-graduation work permit to gain Canadian experience after completing their studies. Studying in Saskatchewan can also provide a pathway to permanent residence through the SINP’s International Graduate category.

Enjoying Life in Saskatchewan

In addition to work and education opportunities, Saskatchewan offers a great quality of life for families. The province has a lower cost of living compared to many other parts of Canada, meaning your money can go further here. Housing, in particular, is much more affordable than in cities like Toronto or Vancouver.

Saskatchewan is known for its friendly, welcoming communities. Even in larger cities like Saskatoon and Regina, many neighborhoods have a small-town feel where people look out for one another. Newcomers often comment on how quickly they feel a sense of belonging here.

For those who love the outdoors, Saskatchewan does not disappoint.

With its wide open prairies, boreal forests, and abundant lakes, the province offers endless opportunities for activities like hiking, camping, fishing and canoeing in the summer, and cross-country skiing and snowmobiling in the winter. Saskatchewan is also a great place to raise children, with a strong public education system and plenty of family-friendly attractions. Some highlights include:

  • Wanuskewin Heritage Park in Saskatoon, where you can learn about Indigenous culture and history
  • The Royal Saskatchewan Museum in Regina, featuring exhibits on the province’s natural history
  • The Saskatchewan Science Centre in Regina, with hands-on exhibits and an IMAX theater
  • Moose Jaw Tunnels, where you can learn about the city’s connection to Al Capone and prohibition-era smuggling

The province also hosts many festivals and events throughout the year celebrating its multicultural heritage, including Regina’s Mosaic festival, Saskatoon’s Folkfest, and Prince Albert’s Tapestrama.

The Bottom Line

Immigrating to a new country is a big decision, but Saskatchewan offers a welcoming destination for families looking for new opportunities and a high quality of life. With the SINP, skilled workers have a clear pathway to achieving permanent residence in the province. If Saskatchewan is your goal, it’s important to start the process early.

With the July 31, 2024 deadline approaching, now is the time to assess your eligibility, gather your documents, and prepare your EOI profile. With some advance planning and persistence, you could be settling into your new life on the prairies by this time next year. For more information on the SINP and how to immigrate to Saskatchewan, check out these helpful resources:

With its strong economy, welcoming communities, and incredible natural beauty, Saskatchewan has so much to offer newcomers to Canada. Could it be the right fit for your family? Start exploring your immigration options today.

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