Tetiana is a native of Ukraine who moved to B.C. in 2014 in search of a better life for her and her two young sons.
Unfortunately, Tetiana found herself on income assistance, and the busy single mother did not have the resources to pursue her dream of a career as an early childhood educator.
“I’ve always had a passion for working with toddlers and children”, says Tetiana, but she wasn’t sure how to make her dream a reality.
Tetiana turned to the YWCA WorkBC Employment Services Centre in Vancouver, where she learned about the Single Parent Employment Initiative (SPEI). SPEI is a $24.5 million government program that provides a range of supports for single parents on income or disability assistance who want to build their skills and get back into the workforce. Eligible parents can receive tuition funding for up to one year of training, or one year of paid work experience, daycare costs so they can go to school and have peace of mind that their children are being well cared for, and even transit costs. The program will also cover day care costs for up to one year after a participant finds employment.
With the help of SPEI, Tetiana enrolled in the Early Childhood Education Program at MTI Community College in Burnaby - and she’s getting top marks.
“It’s been excellent, just a great experience” says Tetiana. “I’m so thankful to the YWCA WorkBC Centre and the Single Parent Employment Initiative. I hope to graduate next winter, and then work with young children at a daycare centre.”
Tetiana also says it’s important to raise awareness about SPEI so that more parents like herself can find the supports they need to make their dreams become a reality.
Read more stories of single parents getting support to build a better future for their family.
Learn more about the Single Parent Employment Initiative.