Bridging the Gap, Northern Alberta YMCA’s employment readiness program, is coming to Red Deer! The program is free, and open to youth aged 15-30. Call 403-392-7514 for more information.

Bridging the Gap, Northern Alberta YMCA’s employment readiness program, is coming to Red Deer! The program is free, and open to youth aged 15-30. Call 403-392-7514 for more information.

The Y bridges the gap between school and the working world

Free training and work experience to help youth get their start

Getting a good job can be more than a little tricky.

You need experience to get hired, but how do you get experience if you can’t get a job? You know education and training will help you earn more money, but when are you supposed to go to school if you can’t afford to take time off?

There’s a lot to learn when you’re taking the leap from school to work, and the YMCA of Northern Alberta wants to help.

Bridging the Gap is a free 20-week employment readiness program that enhances the skills of young Albertans aged 15 to 30.

“This program is already operating in other regions, but we’re excited to finally be bringing it to Red Deer,” says Amy Komarniski, Centre Manager of the Northside Community Centre.

Bridging the Gap

The program includes classroom training and a work placement, and not only is it free, you’ll earn a living allowance while you participate. That means you can finally gain that valuable work experience to get your start, and you won’t have to go into debt to do it.

  • 8 weeks of small group instruction: You’ll learn job skills like writing a resume and cover letter, computer skills, and training specific to your career path, plus career-building skills like goal setting, budgeting and stress and time management. Earn valuable certificates including First Aid, CPR and WHMIS. (Classes are virtual right now, and will be in-person at the Northside Community Centre when it’s safe to gather)
  • One-on-one coaching: Meet with an advisor for help choosing a career path, connections with employers and links to community resources. Child care assistance is also available if needed.
  • 12 weeks of work experience: Get experience in your chosen field, and in-depth training on-the-job. YMCA works with employer partners to connect Bridging the Gap participants with local employers.

“It’s a youth-focused environment with friendly, qualified staff,” Komarniski says. “We’re launching our 20-week session now, and look forward to bringing in a new group of young people every ten weeks.”

Recruitment has already started, and the first 20-week session starts Feb. 8! Get more information by calling 403-392-7514 or emailing BTGRD@northernalberta.ymca.ca.

YMCA continues to serve Red Deer

While the Northside Community Centre is currently closed to in-person fitness, staff continue to serve the community through familiar programs. Everything from online fitness to housing supports, mental health programs and youth services are working in different ways to keep supporting Red Deer. If you need to connect, visit northernalberta.ymca.ca to learn more.

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