February 6th, 2016
The Canadian federal government provides funding for small businesses and community coordinators that require innovative young employees to help develop their organizations or communities. The Skills Link Program helps high-demand businesses reach new heights while helping disadvantaged Canadian youth in the process.
This government funding opportunity offers small business funding grants and wage subsidies that help train and hire young individuals between the ages of 15 and 30 who face employment barriers. These participants must be Canadian citizens, permanent residents, or have refugee status. Eligible organizations should foster a workplace environment that encourages these workers to develop their knowledge and skills of the industry.
The Youth Employment Strategy delivers the funding for this initiative. Eleven federal departments and agencies support this program because they know the importance of Canada’s youths for this country’s future. Youth play an important role in the development of any society. The very best of them become tomorrow’s leaders, but this doesn’t happen accidentally. The government knows they need to invest in youth to provide answers to today’s tough problems. Some of the best answers come from the least expected sources, which is why they recognize the importance of helping those that are often disadvantaged by society.
Eligible applicants include for profit and not-for-profit organizations, municipal governments, Aboriginal organizations (which covers tribal councils, band councils, and self-government entities), provincial and territorial governments, institutions, agencies, and Crown Corporations.
These applicants include either employers/organizations or community coordinators. Skills Link defines community coordinators as someone that receives funding to enter into agreements with eligible employers and participants that perform activities in line with Skill Link’s objectives.
Eligible project activities
Skills Link provides government funding for businesses proposing projects that involve at least eight youth participants. Applicants from rural areas must give strong reasons for not meeting this minimum number to receive consideration. Skills Link bases funding decisions on labour market needs, program priorities, program terms and conditions, and the available funding they have.
All projects should provide work-experience for participants, including skills to increase their future employability. The typical duration of work ranges from 12 to 52 weeks, but this time might be longer or shorter based on specific individual needs. The maximum duration is three years. Work should be fulltime (30 or more hours in a week), but can include part-time work in certain circumstances.
The expected results of these projects are that they should serve as many individuals as possible, by giving them the means to find employment or self-employment. Some participants will excel as entrepreneurs, and Skills Link rewards applicants that encourage youth to become self-sustaining and capable business people working towards a future in the labour market. They should also help participants hoping to return to school to further their skills and knowledge.
Skills Link offers government funding of up to $25,000 per participant. Costs cover income support for individuals based on the provincial or territorial minimum wage rates, mandatory employment related costs, completion bonuses, or additional costs that participants might require to participate in a project. These are typically related to relocation, including travel time, transportation, and dependent care. It also considers other reasonable item costs that help an eligible youth participate (to a maximum of $500).
This $25,000 includes all possible services that participants might require. This amount also considers individuals with disabilities, in which case applicants might receive additional funding, provided the applicant submits a rationale for the additional expenses.
Contact INAC Services for any further information about the Skills Link Program. This government funding initiative can create high levels of success for your organization or community, all while aiding the development of future leaders from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences.