According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), in 2023, the number of forcibly displaced persons worldwide was 110 million, more than ever previously recorded.

Of those forced to flee their homes and communities because of conflict,
human rights violations or persecution, 36.4 million were refugees – half of whom were women and girls.


Refugees and refugee claimants face a number of barriers once they arrive in Ottawa, including

  • high costs of living
  • language barriers
  • access to employment opportunities
  • credential recognition
  • health and wellness issues
  • accessing trauma supports
  • navigating the immigration and refugee process
  • sponsoring their family members
  • planning their financial independence
  • lack of affordable housing

For refugee women who are alone, there are also unique gender barriers and challenges and risks of isolation in the resettlement process.


Canada has a well-known and exceptional history of welcoming refugees and is one of the largest resettlement countries in the world.

Refugees often join Canada’s middle-class within five years of their arrival. Refugees report a “strong” sense of belonging to Canada and are committed to integrating into the Canadian society and calling this country home.

The demand for services to support refugees continues to outpace existing capacity.

welcome to canada


The COVID-19 pandemic has further exacerbated the existing vulnerabilities of refugees and asylum seekers, including their physical and mental health, financial security, and access to services and education. Backlog in processing refugee claimants and humanitarian and permanent residence applications, along with economic downturn, are current issues for refugees, including Carty House residents.

The pandemic has disproportionately affected female refugees, which has increased the need for protection services to women and girls.

Carty House reaffirms its commitment to prioritize the safety, care, and support of its women residents. We will continue to provide a safe space for refugee women to begin the process of rebuilding their lives.