As the next step in its launch of a national co-sponsorship program, ECDC held three days of training in the past month for 14 staff from 10 affiliates. During the training, ECDC’s national Community Engagement department shared guidelines, tips, and materials that staff can use to recruit and train co-sponsorship teams. Since these teams will be playing an important role in partnering with the local resettlement agency to welcome and integrate newly arriving families, it is essential that they are well prepared. ECDC has created a manual to guide teams as they carry out their responsibilities which was introduced to staff during the national training-of-trainers. Participants simulated interactive training activities and reflected upon the best ways of building the knowledge and skills of co-sponsors.
Affiliates have already started using the resources and skills gained to cascade training at the local level to co-sponsorship teams who have gone through preliminary steps to self-organize and apply.
On a monthly basis, the 10 affiliates implementing co-sponsorship programs will meet to share experiences, document learnings, and make recommendations to improve the model.