YOUTH JOB CONNECTION Success Story - James

When James came in to YES, he had a simple goal.  He wanted to find a job and he wanted to keep that job.  He wanted a steady income to support himself.  He wanted a job close to home in a place where he felt a sense of belonging.   There were a number of barriers interfering with James meeting that goal, but a single negative employment experience was the barrier that was really impacting his job search.  It seemed to be tripping him up at every turn.  Worse, it was gnawing away at his self-esteem.   

After meeting with James, Youth Worker Sharon De Benetti recommended the intensive supports available through the Youth Job Connection (YJC) program.  The first step was pre-employment training.  YJC offers 60-90 hours of paid training to address employment barriers, build soft skills and focus on success on the job.  James appreciated the focus on soft skills like communication, conflict resolution and problem solving in the workplace.  He also liked the variety of workshops and guest presenters like the Thunder Bay Art Gallery.  James appreciated that the training was paid, which provided him with an income even before his placement began. 

When it came time to find a placement, James focused on a position that would utilize his skills and a workplace where he could feel good coming to work every day.  After his pre-employment training, he realized that the negative employment experience he had dwelled on for so long, was just a bad employment fit.  This time, he wanted to do things right.  With help from Job Developer, Ross Raven, he landed on a position at Hands on Car Wash.  This placement ticked all the boxes for James and holding out for the right opportunity proved to be a good decision.   

From the start, James liked the people he worked with.  He recognized that it was a highly positive work environment. With support from the YJC team and his new employer, James settled in to his detailing position, and realized he had an inclination for this type of work.   “He has the potential to be a good employee here”, president and CEO Nestor Baranyk told Ross, after James had been on the job for a couple of weeks.  Nestor appreciated the fact that James showed a genuine interest in his work and it was no surprise to the YJC team when he decided to keep James on after the placement ended.  

Three months later, we caught up with James.  Because he was still working with his placement employer 3 months after the placement ended, Hands On Car Wash is now eligible to receive funds through the Employing Young Talent Initiative in addition to the support they received during James’ YJC placement.  Congratulations to James and thank you to Nestor and Bev at Hands on Car Wash for providing youth opportunities in our community.

If you would like to access the training and placement supports available through the Youth Job Connection program, just walk in to YES.  New intakes happen every month.  We will work with you to determine if participation in Youth Job Connection is the best path for you. 

Employers who have opportunities for young people, and would like more information about the program, can contact rraven(at)yesjobsnow(dot)comRoss Raven : 807-624-1976. 

Community partners who work with youth who could benefit from this program can connect with our skovacic(at)yesjobsnow(dot)comYouth Workers: 807-624-1960



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