The Co-operators’ Pathways to Employability Initiative was established in 2020 as a response to the economic shutdowns of COVID-19 affecting youth across Canada employed in low-skilled sectors. As part of the Co-operators Community Funds (CCF), this program focuses on providing employability supports through life skills training and employment reskilling opportunities for marginalized youth who have lost jobs or educational opportunities due to COVID-19.
The goal of the initiative is to facilitate movement into higher quality, sustainable, secure jobs through:
- Connecting youth to small business employers and wrap-around employment, life skills and psychosocial supports.
- Supporting small business employers to find, hire, train and retain youth.
- Partnering with service providers (employment, counselling, training, industry and business, government) to leverage offerings and financial support towards meaningful youth employment.
#ImpactCOVID: Road to Recovery Project
The #ImpactCOVID: Road to Recovery Project is the first program being offered under the P2E Initiative. In partnership with the Canadian Council for Youth Prosperity (CCYP), RBC Future Launch, and Magnet, the Co-Operators are developing a youth-led pandemic economic recovery plan. Over the course of two project phases, youth are co-designing the plan with small businesses (SMBs) followed by testing the plan through employment at SMBs and participation in community programs across Canada. Youth will gain valuable and impactful work experience with SMBs (including co-ops, non-profits and social enterprises) and community partners and SMBs will build capacity to hire, train and retain youth.
Applications are due January 15, 2021.