A new program for immigrants in Grande Prairie is being launched tonight by Crime Prevention.

Assistant Program Manager Angela Sutherland says the Cultural Integration Academy was established to help youth from other countries and their families better mesh with the community.

“I think that’s really important to have something like this, because it balances what’s already being offered in the community for our newcomers. We are providing the opportunity, especially for the youth, to receive the proper tools to succeed and become contributing members of our community.”

It includes education sessions on everything from mental health supports and local school systems, as well as mentorship from volunteer families.

The two-year pilot project has been funded by a provincial grant of $250,000.

They’re hoping to have four, eight-week sessions a year with 15 families each in youth and adult streams.

Interested families can contact the City’s Crime Prevention department directly.

At the end, Sutherland hopes to see data that shows the impact made on families, that could lead to an ongoing partnership.