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Fast Facts

Sir John A. MacDonald, credit Queen's University Archives

First Capital Day!

Every year, Kingston celebrates its role as the first capital city of Canada with a First Capital Day festival of special events and activities.

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Living in Kingston

Newcomers have much to learn about life in Canada. The weather poses new considerations, the health system seems very different and getting around your new community requires planning and patience, especially in the winter. Adjusting to a different culture and learning a new language are also challenging.

Many people and organizations are available to help you and your family get to know the schools, hospitals, financial institutions and agencies that will help you settle into a new and productive life in Kingston. You'll learn about the many different neighbourhoods that make up Kingston, special holidays and celebrations marked by Canadians, and where and how to shop for food and other necessities (see Shopping).

Through the many local ethno-cultural organizations and places of worship, you can meet other people from your home country who have also chosen to make their home in Kingston. Information on the cost of living, studying and working in Kingston is also available and important for newcomers.

It's also important to know what makes Kingston special. The city's goal is to be the most sustainable community in Canada. To that end, all residents, including newcomers, are encouraged to participate in a multi-faceted recycling system to reduce their household waste and preserve the natural environment.

This section has information on important aspects of life in Kingston:

  • City Neighbourhoods — Details on various neighbourhoods of Kingston. Includes links to maps, information on services and amenities, and statistical information.
  • Transportation — How to get around Kingston. Transportation options within the city and between other cities in the province.
  • Housing — Information on housing options in Kingston. Includes details on Kingston's neighbourhoods, renting or buying a home, subsidized housing, co-op housing, and utilities and other household needs.
  • Personal Finance — Information on managing your personal finances in Canada. Details on the banking system, obtaining credit, taxes and payroll deductions, the cost of living and the financial programs and services available in Kingston.
  • Arts, Activities & Entertainment — A recreation overview to sports, entertainment, parks, conservation areas, museums and cultural activities for every age in Kingston. Includes information about community events and festivals, service organizations, volunteering and community gardens.
  • Family — Overview of programs and services available in Kingston to support families with children, seniors and elders, and those with special needs. Also includes how to bring your family to Canada and links to more detailed information.
  • Public Services — Public services available in Kingston. Description of public and emergency services and where to find them.
  • Health — The Canadian health-care system and what you need to know.
  • Employment — Main page for information on working in Canada. Includes details on job requirements, Canadian business expectations, what to research before coming to Canada and links to information on Kingston's job market and the programs and services available to assist you.
  • Schools, Education & Language Programs — Information on education options in Kingston. What types and levels of schools there are, language training, and additional educational programs and topics.
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