Newcomers to Canada

The Library provides materials, information and programs for people who speak languages other than English or French, or who are new to Canada.

Multi-lingual Materials

Featured Languages
The library provides adult and children’s books, magazines and DVDs in many different languages in addition to English and French.   Currently we offer 16 languages in print and many more in DVDs, in addition to those listed in our Featured Languages.  Please ask about our Multi-lingual Collection!


Language Learning
Improve your English with ESL, TOEFL, IELTS, TOEIC or access language learning resources in other languages.


ESL and Literacy Readers
The library provides a variety of book and CD kits, as well as high interest, low vocabulary readers.

Newcomer News & Programs

Newcomer Bus Tour

Date: Saturday, September 16, 2017
Time: 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Start and End Location: Whitby Central Library, 405 Dundas Street West, Whitby

Space is limited and interested participants must pre-register. Register online or by calling or visiting any Whitby library location. A newcomer can be a new immigrant to Canada who is settling in Whitby, or any new Whitby resident. This tour will not only be a fun, family-friendly event, but also an educational experience designed to introduce newcomers to their local government and their new community.

The tour will begin at the Whitby Central Library and will include points of interest including recreation centres, library branches, municipal and regional headquarters, historical sites, the Station Gallery, Port Whitby Marina, Heydenshore Park and much more. 

Other highlights of the tour include: 

  • A guided tour of a recreation centre to highlight programs and services available at the Town recreation facilities, including instructions on how to use the Recreation Guide;
  • A guided tour of the Whitby Central Library highlighting the no-cost family resources, including multilingual collections and multimedia resources and an opportunity to get a library card on the spot; and
  • Refreshments at the beginning and end of the tour.



Test Drive IELTS Online
Try out the British version of IELTS with Road to IELTS Test Drive for 30 free hours worth of practice General and Academic training modules.  Each of the speaking, writing, listening, and reading areas has advice and tutorials, practice zone, and test practice tabs.  And don’t forget to check out the library’s IELTS practice books!



Getting a Job in Canada – Welcome Centre Immigrant Services
Newcomers bring a wide variety of employment skills and experience to their search for employment in Canada; however many are unfamiliar with Canadian job search practices. Welcome Centres offer a wide range of supports to assist in developing the skills needed to find work, such as these job search workshops



Conversation Circles
This is an opportunity for newcomers to practice their language skills in a welcoming environment and learn about Canada with the help of volunteers from the Community Development Council Durham (CDCD). Participants with a variety of language abilities come together to discuss topics, have questions answered, share stories, learn about library resources, and so much more! This is a free drop-in program. Please contact Maria Abogado at CDCD for more information at 905-686-2661 ext.109 or


French Conversation Circle
Central Library
Tuesdays, 6:30–8:00 p.m.
November 7 - December 12, 2017  


English Conversation Circle
Central Library
Thursdays, 6:30–8:00 p.m
November 2 - December 14, 2017


Refugee Information
Find information for and about refugees through and Canada Immigration and Citizenship.


Basic refugee information

Local assistance for refugees

Volunteer to help

Welcome Refugees