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Ontario youth job opportunity program

In recent years Ontario has been plagued by a 15 per cent youth unemployment rate. This year the government showcased programs that have given job opportunities to 20,000 young people over the past year. The flagship program in the Youth Job Strategy is the Youth Employment Fund (, which gives employers funding to hire a student for four to six months, but other programs include a youth entrepreneurship fund, a youth innovation fund and a fund called Youth Skills Connection, which promotes partnerships between business, labour, educators and youth to help fill gaps in the workforce and help students facing barriers to employment.

Photo of Ricardo Matos
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I find this program quite holistic as it combines employment incentives for companies, support for young entrepeneurs and startups, as well as training and education initiatives (study loans) for the unemployed youth. these training opportunities allow them to either complete their studies or develop new careers.  

It involves a number of institutions from businesses, labour and educators, to provide the tools and networks needed to break down barriers to employment. 

According to the information released by the government of Ontario the program had a strong impact on employment numbers last year (


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Photo of Shane Zhao

Great share Ricardo! It's especially great to see how Ontario's Youth Jobs Strategy has already achieved two thirds of its goal to create 30,000 job opportunities for young people. I think it's particularly insightful how Duguid credited the success of the program to not just funding, but to the mentorship and guidance that he called “wraparound training services." These "wraparound training services," is a key to helping young people retain employment opportunities long after they've left the program.

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