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AAFC funds youth employment in ag


June 4, 2019
By Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (edited)
Photo via Twitter

Applications for Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Youth Employment and Skills Program are now open.

The federal government has announced an investment of up to $3.75 million into this program, with the goal of bringing youth into the agricultural industry. Applications will be accepted on a continuous basis starting June 3, 2019 until funding has been fully committed. Projects must be completed by March 31, 2020.

Announced by Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Marie-Claude Bibeau, the program will provide funding to employers across the agriculture sector to hire Canadian youth, ages 15 to 30. To be eligible, participants must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident; be underemployed, unemployed or a student; and have not participated in any other Youth Employment and Skills Strategy programs.

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The new program will provide 50 per cent of funds, up to $14,000, towards costs associated with hiring youth. For not-for-profit organizations, and applicants who hire Indigenous youth or youth facing barriers, the program will provide 80 per cent of total eligible costs, up to $14,000.

The initiative is part of a commitment through Budget 2019 for a modernized Youth Employment and Skills Strategy aimed at providing better supports for Canada’s youth.

As part of this Strategy, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Youth Employment and Skills Program aims to create opportunities for Canadian youth, particularly youth facing barriers to entering or staying in the workforce, to explore employment in the agriculture and agri-food sector and to better prepare themselves for the labour market.

“The agriculture industry is strong and growing, creating one in eight jobs which makes it the nation’s single largest employer. This program will allow more young people in Canada to explore the limitless potential this industry has to offer, while helping agricultural producers and processors meet their labour needs,” says Bibeau.

“The strategy builds on the success of the Youth Employment Strategy to support the next generation of the middle class. Young Canadians are talented, ambitious and hard-working, but getting a strong start in the workforce can be challenging for many-especially for youth with additional challenges. The Youth Employment and Skills Strategy will make it easier for young people to transition from the classroom to the workforce, including those facing barriers. It is part of our plan to ensure that everyone has a fair chance at success,” says Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour

Through the Youth Employment and Skills Program, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada hopes to create over 200 positions across Canada within the agriculture sector.

Applications can be found on the AAFC site here.