Thank you for your interest in the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) in the West Kootenay region.
The West Kootenay Region was recognized as an area that could benefit from this pilot and entered into a partnership with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) in 2019-2020. The West Kootenay region uses this pilot to strengthen local economies and support workforce development. Each of the 11 participating communities across across Canada have tailored the pilot to address their needs and economic development goals. For more information on the benefits of immigration, please go to Immigration Matters.
If you are interested in participating in this program, please click on one of the two buttons below:
RNIP Success Stories
Many lives have changed forever thanks to the West Kootenay Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot.
This pilot has helped over 550 newcomers apply for their Canadian permanent residency. Additionally, over 140 West Kootenay employers have used the pilot to support existing employees or hire skilled foreign workers to support their workforce needs… Read more
Dani and Tiago: Crafting Their Children’s Freedom
“We are so blessed to be here with all this nature around us, especially because we came from São Paulo, a concrete jungle,” boasts Dani about her family’s home in Nelson. “I really like all the events that happen around here too. I was worried that I’d be bored in such a small town, but … Read more
Ainsworth Hot Springs: Multiculturalism Makes for a Varied and Interesting Life
“Even though the jobs are here, we need the workers,” says Jane, Director of Human Resources at Ainsworth Hot Springs Resort. “We’ve had to get creative as far as retaining staff out here because we’re so remote. Especially in hospitality, we’re always looking for employees.” Ainsworth Hot Springs Resort, owned by the Lower Kootenay Band, … Read more
Paul: “Google – What’s Slang for Acceptance and a Fun Career?”
“Mostly, I like the kids,” says Paul, about his favourite part about working as an early childhood educator (ECE) at Cornerstone Children’s Center in Nelson. “The kids call me Silly Pauly, so I try to be more funny. Yeah. I love that.” Paul has been living in Nelson with his family for five years and … Read more
The West Kootenay is a welcoming region of over 30,000 people. Visitors come to the Kootenays in every season to experience the majestic mountains, abundant wildlife, and many beautiful lakes and rivers.
Business is alive and well in the Kootenays. Primary economic drivers are resource extraction and forestry, with agriculture, tourism, and vigorous entrepreneurial activity across many other sectors also making a considerable contribution to local economies.
The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot is a community-led immigration program designed to bring skilled permanent residents to rural communities. The goal of the pilot is to spread the benefits of economic immigration to communities outside of large metropolitan centres.
The West Kootenay region has partnered with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to develop a program that works best for our community by prioritizing skilled immigrants who intend to make the West Kootenay region their home. For more information, please go to the IRCC’s website.
Want to know more about how the Pilot is going, read our West Kootenay Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot Labour Market Partnership Final Report (February 2023).