Anna Majkowski went from jobless to being groomed to take over a local history non-profit society that has given her a new lease on life, thanks to her local WorkBC Employment Services Centre.
“I was unemployed and I couldn’t find any work,” Anna says.
She had lost her job at a local sign company and was on employment insurance for a year before finding her fit. Her WorkBC counsellor suggested a Job Creation Partnership that the B.C. government had with the Columbia Basin Institute of Regional History.
Whether it’s in a village, municipality, a First Nations community, or a large city, Job Creation Partnerships have helped job seekers like Anna get work experience on a huge variety of projects.
“These partnerships are an innovative way to help British Columbians get hands-on work experience and be successful in the workforce, while helping communities undertake valuable local projects,” said Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation Don McRae. “This program is really benefiting British Columbians where they live and is a great fit with B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint.”
Since January, 43 Job Creation Partnerships have come on stream and benefitted 190 participants on projects ranging from organizing a First Nations cultural event in Bella Bella, to workers renovating a former school into a community centre in Clearwater. Other workers are doing an accessibility evaluation of 300 business, venues and public spaces in the Lower Mainland. People have also got experience in areas as diverse as event planning, horticulture, and outdoor trails expansion and maintenance. All of these projects give unemployed British Columbians work experience that they can use to find full-time, permanent employment.
It worked for Anna. After learning the ropes from Columbia Basin Institute of Regional History’s executive director Derryll White, she is now thriving as marketing director. As such, she’s helping to preserve history in the Columbia Basin and she has acquired many new skills.
“I do have an aptitude for computers and I can now train people,” she says.
Derryll likes her so much, he’s grooming her to take over as executive director when he retires in February. “We see a lot of people in these Job Creation Partnerships that have a lot of talent. Anna struck me as somebody who fit our needs and I liked what she was doing,” Derryll says. Two other workers from the project have also found full time work. These project also benefit the community. In this case, an historic walking tour brochure has been produced for tourists, locals and students alike.
Duncan’s Erin Ward received a different kind of work experience in her Job Creation Partnership at the Cowichan Green Community Society. She helped develop a local food forest and helped produce a how-to booklet on food forests so others could do the same. She’s now employed full-time by the society.
Job Creation Partnerships are a component of the Employment Program of BC’s Community and Employer Partnerships, which fund projects that increase employability and share labour market information throughout the province.
The Community and Employer Partnerships program is featured in B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint that helps align training and education with in-demand jobs and provides more support to people who are struggling to gain a foothold in the job market or who face unique challenges.
- Nearly $8.5 million has been committed to Community and Employer Partnerships since the program launched in April 2012, as part of the Employment Program of BC. The goal is to increase labour market partnerships, and employment opportunities and skills training for unemployed British Columbians.
- To date, 130 projects have been funded throughout the province, benefitting more than 490 job seekers.
- In 2014-15, the ministry has committed to investing $331 million in employment and labour market programs under the Employment Program of BC.
- The Employment Program of BC is funded by the Province of British Columbia as well as the Government of Canada through the Labour Market Development Agreement.
- Funding supports 85 WorkBC Employment Services Centres throughout the province and the four components of the Community and Employer Partnerships fund:
- Job Creation Partnerships - There have been 104 Job Creation Partnerships to date, 43 since January
- Labour Market Partnerships - There have been 16 Labour Market Partnerships to date, 10 since January
- Project-Based Labour Market Training - There have been five Project-Based Labour Market Training projects to date, all since January
- Research and Innovation - There have been five Research and Innovation projects to date, all since January
Who is eligible?
- Non-profit organizations
- Crown corporations
- Municipalities, agencies or territorial governments
- Bands/tribal councils
- Public health and educational institutions
For more information on Community and Employer Partnerships: www.workbc.ca/CEP
To find a local WorkBC Employment Services Centre: www.workbccentres.ca
To learn more about the Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation: www.gov.bc.ca/sdsi
For previous projects please click here: http://www.newsroom.gov.bc.ca/2014/01/workers-gain-experience-through-community-partnerships.html
Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation