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Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) is a program designed for those who want to live and settle in one of the participating communities in Canada, becoming permanent residents.

Participating communities:

  • Vernon, British Columbia
  • West Kootenays, British Columbia
  • North Bay, Ontario
  • Sudbury, Ontario
  • Timmins, Ontario
  • Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
  • Thunder Bay, Ontario
  • Brandon, Manitoba
  • Altona/Rhineland, Manitoba
  • Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan
  • Claresholm, Alberta

Applicants need to meet the Federal and community-specific eligibility requirements described below. The Pilot accepts job posting and applications for all skill levels and NOCs.

Next step is to consult on the community’s website the list of employers and jobs available that match the applicant’s work experience or field of studies in Canada. The candidate can apply online for jobs and be selected for recommendation by the community. Each community will evaluate the applicants and recommend them according to the community’s specific criteria and procedure.

Federal Government requirements:

Work experience

The candidate needs to prove at least one year of paid work experience, regardless of whether it was continuous or not, in the past 3 years, working part-time or full-time on the same job position with the same or different employer, inside or outside Canada. Required total hours are 1560 and cannot be accumulated in less than 1 year.

International students (Work experience exemption)

An international students who graduated with a degree, diploma, certificate, or trade or apprenticeship credential from a Canadian public post-secondary institution located in the community are exempt from the work experience requirement.

To qualify for this exemption, they must have graduated with

  • A credential from a 2+ year-long post-secondary program and were studying as a full-time student for the full duration of the 2+ years
  • Received the credential within 18 months before the application for permanent residence
  • Were in the community for at least 16 months of the last 24 months spent studying to obtain the credential


  • A master’s degree or higher and were studying as a full-time student for the duration of the degree, obtained your degree within 18 months before the application is submitted, and were in the community for the length of the studies

Do not qualify students who were studying English or French made up more than half of the program, distance learning made up more than half of the program, or a scholarship or fellowship was awarded that requires the students to return to their home country to apply what they learned.

Job Offer

Applicants must have a job offer that is:

  • From an employer that carries on business in the community
  • Full time and non-seasonal
  • For an indeterminate period (no end date)
  • At the same skill level, 1 level above or 1 level below the NOC that applies to the applicant’s work experience, except for skill level D for which the job offer must be in the same occupation.

Language requirements
The language requirements for the RNIP are based on the Skill Type or National Occupation Classification (NOC) related to the job position the worker is applying for:

Skill Type CLB/NCLC
Level 0 (Managers) 6
Level A (Professionals such as doctors, dentists and architects) 6
Level B (technical jobs and skilled trades such as chefs and electricians) 5
Level C (intermediate jobs such as industrial butchers, long-haul truck drivers, and food and beverage servers) 4
Level D (labour jobs such as cleaning staff, oil field workers) 4


Educational requirements

The minimum educational requirement for this Pilot is a high school diploma obtained inside or outside Canada. If the applicant has a foreign credential, an educational credential assessment (ECA) report is required.

Financial Resources 

It is required proof of enough money to support the applicant’s and family members’ living costs while they get settled in the community, even if they are not coming to Canada at the same time.

CONTACT US to find out more about proof of funds.

Community-specific Requirements

It is essential to show that the candidate plans to settle in the community to participate in the Pilot.

In British Columbia, the participating communities are Vernon and West Kootenay, including Trail, Castlegar, Rossland, and Nelson.

Rural And Northern Immigration Pilot - Vernon

The community of Vernon has created a Ranking System to evaluate the candidates: the Vernon’s Comprehensive Ranking System (VCRS). The VCRS scores the candidate’s language, job offer and wage, study, family living in the community, age, wage, and driver's license to a maximum of 100 points.

Candidates who meet the federal and community’s requirements can apply for the Pilot, creating a candidate profile and applying for job postings. The Vernon’s RNIP Committee will select applicants with higher scores on the VCRS and offer a recommendation. 

Only 10 workers per month and 100 workers will be recommended per year will be recommender by Vernon. 

The language requirement for Vernon is higher than the Federal requirement. The candidates need to have Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) of 5 or higher, in English or French, for all skill levels and jobs.

The minimum hourly wage for all candidates must be $23 CAD per hour or higher, if needed to meet the range of wages for the particular occupation. Exceptions apply for applicants who are currently working, studying, and/or residing for at least the last 12 months in Vernon.

Employers located in the Community are now able to post jobs on the Vernon RNIP website. 

They need to meet the following criteria:

  • Showing that the company tried to hire a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident prior to post a job offer
  • Employing at least three full-time Canadian citizens or permanent residents 
  • Go through a required training session about settlement, eligibility, and program integrity before posting a job through RNIP
  • Having operated in Canada for five years, with two of those years within Vernon, or must have a business investment of at least $200,000 CAD in Vernon

Rural And Northern Immigration Pilot - West Kootenay

West Kootenay has defined priorities for candidates applying with job offers in the following occupations:

Truck driver NOC 7511
Health Care Aide NOC 3413
Community Support Worker NOC 4212
Early Childcare Educator/Assistant NOC 4214

The community is also selecting candidates based on a 100-point ranking system which considers:

  • Family / Friend in the communities
  • Living in and previous travel to the communities
  • Work in the West Kootenay Region
  • Wage and NOC category of job offer
  • Candidate’s age
  • Driver’s license
  • Proficiency in English and French 
  • Candidate’s spouse / common-law partner status, skills and qualifications

Applicants must score at least 26 points on the points ranking system to be eligible, except for those applying with a job offer in a West Kootenay identified priority NOC who are exempt.

Candidates who meet the following eligibility criteria can apply for a recommendation through the Pilot:

  • Meet the federal eligibility criteria
  • Intend to live in one of the communities
  • Have a Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) of 4 or higher in English and French
  • Complete a candidate profile on the west Kootenay website
  • Have a job offer from an employer located in the Region, with a minimum hourly wage of $22 CAD, or higher, if needed to meet the range of wages for the particular occupation in the same area. Exceptions apply for applicants who are currently working, studying, and/or residing for at least the last 6 months in West Kootenay.

The employer making the job offer needs to demonstrate that the company tried to hire a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident prior to providing the offer to a foreign national. The company also must show that it has operated for at least two years within West Kootenay, or must have a minimum business investment of $200,000 CAD in the West Kootenay Region.

Employers cannot request or accept any form of payment in exchange for providing a job offer and must comply with the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) and/or provincial employment standards to qualify.

The Community Recommendation Committee will assess candidates registered on the West Kootenay website and make recommendations for those with highest score on the ranking system. These is not limit for applications through the West Kootenay communities. The communities will do continuous intakes throughout the year, selecting candidates registered on the website up to six months from the registration date. After this period, if the candidate is not chosen, the application will be declined, however, it is possible to re-apply.

CONTACT US for additional information and requirements for the other participating communities.