​​​About ORAT

​The Office for Refugees of the Archdiocese of Toronto (ORAT) was established in 2009 and has become one of the largest private sponsors of refugees in Canada. To date, ORAT has initiated the resettlement of 2519 refugees to this region, working in cooperation with 160 Catholic churches of the Archdiocese of Toronto.

ORAT helps people – primarily Catholic church communities – to provide assistance for uprooted people by helping parishes, religious orders and Catholic institutions within the Archdiocese of Toronto to find durable solutions for refugees in need. The Office is a venue of communication, cooperation and collaboration for refugee-serving organizations to improve the level of services provided by Catholic organizations.

Support available from ORAT includes:

  • providing information sessions for the general public regarding refugee resettlement and other Canadian immigration options;
  • assessing resettlement applications, including the refugees’ story or general inquiries, and settlement plans;
  • monitoring all procedures before and after submission of a resettlement application and the integration process; and
  • serving as the liaison between parishes, the Archdiocese of Toronto and Immigration Canada (CIC) in refugee resettlement cases.
Statistics relevant to current migrant crisis:

  • In 2013, ORAT submitted resettlement request for 72 Syrians.
  • In 2014, submissions were made for another 72 Syrians.
  • As of September 1, 2015 resettlement requests were submitted for 63 Syrian refugees.
  • To date, 120 Syrian refugees have already arrived in the Archdiocese of Toronto related to ORAT submissions.
  • In 2014, ORAT submitted requests for 64 people from Africa (DR Congo, Rwanda, South Sudan); requests for 138 people from the Middle East (Iraq, Syria); and requests for 174 people from Asia (Tibet).