Government of Canada supports youth internship program in Quebec

    SAGUENAY, QC, April 16 /CNW Telbec/ - Young people seeking work
experience to acquire the skills they need to enter the job market will
benefit from a paid internship program supported by the Government of Canada.
The Honourable Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Minister of National Revenue, Minister
of State (Agriculture) and Member of Parliament for Jonquière-Alma, made the
announcement today on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human
Resources and Skills Development.
    "In today's economic environment, it is more important than ever that we
invest in our youth by helping them develop the skills needed to participate
and succeed in the job market," said Minister Blackburn. "This internship
program will provide youth facing barriers to employment with an opportunity
to gain knowledge and valuable work experience allowing them to reach their
full potential."
    In support of the youth internship program, the Service externe de main
d'oeuvre du Saguenay will receive $109,426 in federal funding through the
Government of Canada's Skills Link program. With the help of this funding, 16
young participants will get the opportunity to develop employment skills
through a series of developmental workshops and on-the-job experience.
    "It is important that we offer services that are adapted to youth with
little education in order to help them enter the labour force and improve
their quality of life," said Ms. Nathalie Plante, Director General of the
Service externe de main-d'oeuvre du Saguenay. "This project will help 16 youth
in our area gain, in most cases, their first significant work experience,
supported and supervised by the project officer."
    Skills Link is part of the Government of Canada's strategy to create the
best educated, most skilled and most flexible workforce in the world. The
Government underscored this commitment in January when it introduced Canada's
Economic Action Plan. A key component of the Plan is to create more and better
opportunities for Canadian workers through skills development.

    The Skills Link program is delivered by Service Canada, which provides
one-stop personalized services for Government of Canada programs, services and
benefits. For more information about this program, call 1-800-O-Canada, go on
the Internet at or visit your local Service Canada Centre.

    This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.


    Between March 9, 2009, and March 5, 2010, the Service externe de main
d'oeuvre du Saguenay will provide 16 youth facing barriers to employment with
an opportunity to increase their employability through skills development
training and paid internship placements.
    The Service externe de main d'oeuvre du Saguenay helps youth, disabled
people and immigrants increase their employability and personal autonomy, in
an effort to help them successfully enter the labour market, or return to
school. Services offered by the organization include workshops aimed at
developing employment skills, such as communication, stress management, job
search strategies and résumé writing. The organization also conducts mock
interviews to help participants obtain employment.
    As part of the Government of Canada's Youth Employment Strategy, the
Skills Link program is one of three Government of Canada programs that help
young Canadians facing barriers to employment obtain career information,
develop skills, gain work experience, find good jobs and stay employed.
    Skills Link focuses on helping youth facing barriers to employment,
including single parents, Aboriginal youth, young persons with disabilities,
recent immigrants, youth living in rural and remote areas, and youth who have
dropped out of high school. It offers a client-centred approach based on
meeting an individual's specific needs. The program supports youth in
developing basic and advanced employment skills. Eligible participants between
15 and 30 years of age-who are not receiving Employment Insurance benefits-are
assisted through a coordinated approach, offering long-term support and
services that can help them find and keep a job.

For further information:

For further information: (media only): Michelle Bakos, Press Secretary,
Office of Minister Finley, (819) 994-2482; Pascal Doucet, Media Relations
Coordinator, Quebec Region, (514) 982-2384, extension 2209; Media Relations
Office, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, (819) 994-5559

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