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Today the government of Canada announced that the YMCA is one of several organizations selected to take part in the new federal program called “Canada Service Corps”. The program aims to support young Canadians between the ages of 15 to 30 years old to get involved in their community through service opportunities, while at the same time gaining valuable skills.
Under this pilot program, the YMCA of Greater Toronto, in partnership with nine other YMCA Associations across Canada, is developing an exciting and innovative program that will engage their local communities called YMCA Community Action Network (YCAN). Funded by the Department of Employment and Social Development, this Signature National Pilot program will run for a little over two years.
This program will have young Canadians develop service projects that help address specific needs in their community. The YMCA will specifically tailor this initiative to involve and support youth who are traditionally underrepresented, including youth who are experiencing poverty, racialized, immigrant, indigenous, have a disability or identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community.
Each of the service projects will develop a network of community contacts and stakeholders, increasing the meaningfulness of the project, creating opportunities for youth development, and adding value to the local community.
“Identifying and addressing local issues is an essential component of the Canada Service Corps. Giving young Canadians from all backgrounds the opportunity to develop projects that will respond to issues in their communities helps them become the leaders of today and tomorrow,” says The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour.
“As young people are our future, giving them opportunities on projects they are truly passionate about makes a difference,” says Medhat Mahdy, President and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Toronto. “It also becomes more significant when these projects can directly benefit their communities. We are honoured to be part of such a program.”
This program will be offered by the YMCA of Greater Vancouver, YMCA Calgary, YMCA of Saskatoon, YMCA-YWCA of Winnipeg, YMCA of Greater Toronto, YMCA of Northeastern Ontario, YMCAs of Quebec, YMCA of Greater Moncton, YMCA of Halifax Dartmouth, and YMCA of Newfoundland and Labrador in their local communities.
YCAN will launch early 2018. If you’re interested in getting involved or want to learn more, please visit https://ymcagta.org/action.
For more information contact:
Deane Code, Veritas Communications/YMCA of Greater Toronto
E: firstname.lastname@example.org | T: 416-640-4661 | M: 416-732-4835
Kassandra O’Brien, Veritas Communications/YMCA of Greater Toronto
E: email@example.com | T: 416-482-2617 | M: 289-264-6499
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