Employment Programs

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This Employment Ontario service is funded in part by the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario.

At the YMCA, we know that when everyone has access to meaningful job opportunities, the whole community wins. And a strong local economy is essential for building a healthy community.

Our Employment Advisors are here to support you in your job search. Whether you’re just starting to explore employment and training opportunities, are preparing to re-enter the workforce or would like help writing an effective resume and preparing for an upcoming interview; our team will help you take the next step that’s right for you.

Learn more about our programs in the list below, and when you’re ready to get started, fill out our contact form and an Employment Advisor will contact you soon.

We understand that every job seeker has different employment needs and goals. As an Employment Ontario service provider, we’re here to help you get the training, skills and experience you need to achieve these goals.

Employment Advisors are ready to help you:

  • Complete career exploration activities to uncover new opportunities
  • Assess your skills and abilities and how they fit with jobs you’re interested in applying to
  • Create a resume that will impress employers
  • Discuss retraining opportunities and financial supports
  • Provide local job leads, employer connections and access to the hidden job market

When everyone has access to meaningful job opportunities, the whole community wins. And a strong local economy is essential for building a healthy community.

You may qualify for financial supports to help reach your employment and training goals. This could include:

  • Transportation costs
  • Work clothing, shoes and personal grooming
  • Special tools, equipment and supplies
  • Certification training and short term training expenses such as books, materials, workplace safety

For more information on these and other financial supports, speak to an Employment Advisor about your specific needs.

We use a unique combination of assessment tools to help you better understand yourself and guide you in making changes in your life, and choosing a meaningful career.

What’s Involved?

  • An introductory meeting to review your personal and career goals
  • Completion of various assessment tools to uncover your strengths and developmental areas
  • An in-depth exploration of your career interests, values and preferences, and personality
  • One-to-one career exploration and planning session(s)
  • Job interview preparation, coaching, and follow-ups

Who is Career Planning/Exploration For?

Career planning/exploration is designed to help you discover and explore your aptitudes, personality, strengths, values and interests. When reviewed with your Employment Advisor, you’ll gain a better understanding of patterns identified so you can increase your self-awareness as you set your professional and life goals.

You will benefit from career planning and exploration if you are….

  • Looking for a career change
  • A high school student, post-secondary school student, or recent graduate
  • Seeking more meaning and satisfaction in your life, or to better understand yourself, your strengths, and areas for development
  • Facing a major life transition, including returning to the workforce

Transitioning to a new job is an exciting time but can also be stressful. Sometimes things out of your control happen, the job isn’t what you expected, or transitioning into the workforce is feeling overwhelming.

Before deciding to quit, work with your Employment Advisor to:

    • Identify core issues and help you assess if the job is the problem
    • Discuss how to adjust to your new environment, colleagues and schedule
    • Strategize ways to create a positive work-life balance

The Ontario Government is committed to helping laid-off workers return to work. Second Career is designed to help workers who have been laid-off and are currently unemployed or underemployed get the skills training they need to find work in one of Ontario’s high-demand occupations.

Second Career provides up to $28,000 for:

  • tuition
  • books
  • other instruction costs such as manuals or workbooks
  • transportation
  • basic living allowance
  • childcare
  • disability needs

Second Career is a cost-sharing grant provided on the basis of need; you may be asked to contribute what you can to your training or education.

How do I apply for Second Career funding?

Meet with an Employment Advisor to determine if you are eligible for Second Career. Several factors are considered when figuring out who will receive funding. Your Employment Advisor will need to review your work history, a copy of your Record of Employment (ROE) indicating a lay-off, education background and your career goal.

If you are eligible for Second Career, your Employment Advisor will support you through the steps to complete your application. You will be asked to provide:

  • details of your financial situation
  • specific research into your goal occupation and potential training institutes
  • proof of costs
  • relevant pre-requisites to participate in program

Your Employment Advisor will support you in getting what you need and will then compile, finalize and submit your application for the Ministry to review. The Ministry will decide whether or not your request is approved. This can take several weeks.

Access the tools and services you need to be successful in your job search.

Anyone who is looking for work is welcome to drop into one of our Resource Centres for these free services:

  • Use computers, phone and fax for employment related tasks
  • Get copies of resumes and print employment paperwork
  • Sign up for job search assistance and workshops
  • Access helpful resources for writing resumes, cover letters and researching post-secondary and apprenticeship programs

Don’t live in the Owen Sound or Hanover area? Employment Advisors travel throughout Grey County, contact us to meet with an Employment Advisor in a community near you.

What Our Clients Have to Say

David B.
Owen Sound, Restart Construction Participant
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"I wanted to send you a note of thanks for including me in the Restart Program that concluded recently. I would also like to praise everyone involved in the program for a job well done. I would like to say how much I enjoyed and felt I benefited from some if not all of the classroom material. A takeaway that I did not expect to leave with is a greater appreciation for the viewpoint of an employer and to ask yourself what assets that you have both personal, academic and in work experience. The placement has gone well I feel and I think they felt similarly since they have hired me on to stay. Everyone there has been super friendly and supportive for which I am very grateful."
Owen Sound, Employment Services Participant
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"I just finished using your services for job search, I was put in contact with Chris Barry and Warren Munroe who helped me with my successful search. First I was contacted by Warren to go over what I would be interested in, and after he got me on board Chris contacted me and put my resume though for a good polish! (I didn’t think my work history looked that good!) After these two people made me look so good the first interview that they sent me to I walked out of the meeting with a new job that I feel confident that fits me! Thanks for all of your help! These people are awesome at what they do!"

Essential Skills Supportive Care (ESSC)

As the Healthcare industry continues to grow, healthcare workers are in high demand.

If you’re interested in starting a career in healthcare, or are currently working in an entry level healthcare position and would like to upgrade your skills for career advancement opportunities, the Essential Skills Supportive Care program will provide you with the skills training you need to succeed.

Ready to receive individualized support and guidance to find and keep a job?

Request an appointment with one of our Employment Advisors today!

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