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Ontario Launches New Youth Jobs Program in Time for Summer

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Ontario Launches New Youth Jobs Program in Time for Summer

Job Help For Youth Now Available At More Than 320 Locations Across Province

Ministry of Colleges and Universities

Ontario has launched a new youth employment program that will help young people ages 15-29 plan their careers, prepare for the labour market and connect to job opportunities. 

The Youth Job Link program is the latest phase of Ontario's Youth Jobs Strategy and will be available to youth and students at more than 320 locations across the province.

As of April 1, 2016, young people will be able to access the following services, available year-round:

  • Information on career options to support career decision-making
  • Advice on how to build the life skills they need to successfully plan and manage a career
  • Opportunities to learn about teamwork, customer service, health and safety and labour rules
  • Help with resumé writing, searching and applying for jobs, and preparing for interviews
  • Assistance to match their skills and interests with employers that have job opportunities.

Ontario is also launching the summer component of the Youth Job Connection program, which will provide summer, part-time and after-school job opportunities to high school students aged 15 to 18 who face challenging life circumstances and may need support transitioning between school and work. Youth Job Connection, which began in October 2015, will continue to provide more intensive, targeted support for unemployed youth between ages 15 and 29 with multiple barriers to employment including poverty, homelessness, disability and mental health.  

Youth Job Link and Youth Job Connection are part of a new suite of programs - which also includes Employment Ontario's Employment Service - designed to help youth with a broader range of employment needs and to ensure resources are used effectively and targeted to those who need them most. Interested youth and employers can contact Employment Ontario to help find a suitable program, and to learn what services are available in their communities. Information is also available through a convenient live chat service.

Helping youth of all abilities and backgrounds access the most effective employment and training programs is part of the government's economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in talent and skills, including helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario's history and investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.

Quick Facts

  • More information on eligibility for the Youth Job Link and Youth Job Connection programs is available online at www.ontario.ca/readysetwork, which provides information on all Ontario employment programs for youth and supports for employers looking to hire them.
  • In some cases, Youth Job Link will also offer individual supports and employer incentives to offset the costs of on-the-job-training, new employee orientation and other hiring-related costs, for those youth that need more assistance finding work.
  • Ontario is investing $250 million over the next two years in the renewed Youth Jobs Strategy to serve up to 150,000 more youth.
  • Youth Job Connection is available at more than 130 Employment Ontario service delivery sites across the province.
  • New summer job opportunities for high school students with multiple barriers to employment build on after-school opportunities already available to them through Youth Job Connection.
  • Employment Ontario’s Employment Service helps 70,000 youth per year with information, job search assistance, and funding for job opportunities and other supports.
  • There are more than 30 government programs to help youth build skills, find a job or start a business.

Additional Resources


“Our government has launched better coordinated, more targeted and more effective employment and training programs to ensure that all people, particularly our youth, have access to evidence-based services that will provide them with the support they need to build their skills and get a good job. I’m excited that Youth Job Link has now launched at more than 320 locations across the province to help youth, including students, who could benefit from some extra help to plan their careers and transition to the labour market. Combined with the more intensive Youth Job Connection, which has shown great uptake since launching in October 2015, Ontario has the right combination of programs in place to help youth with a broad spectrum of needs, abilities and backgrounds get the training they need to actively contribute to our economy.”

Reza Moridi

Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities

“We believe that by providing youth with access to the right supports and opportunities, we can help them make positive choices and reach their full potential. When we invest in our youth through programs like Youth Job Link, we are investing in the future of our province, ensuring future generations have the work skills, experience and opportunities they need and deserve to live positive and productive lives in adulthood.”

Tracy MacCharles

Minister of Children and Youth Services

“As part of our Poverty Reduction Strategy, we will continue to clear the way for people to enter the workforce, especially young people, as meaningful employment is the most effective and speediest way to exit poverty for good. By providing a combination of effective programs like Youth Job Link, which will provide lighter-touch support, as well as Youth Job Connection, which is already providing more intensive supports for vulnerable youth, young people across this province now have access to summer, part-time and after school job opportunities that will give them the training and experience they need to reach their full potential.”

Deb Matthews

Deputy Premier, President of Treasury Board, and Minister Responsible for the Poverty Reduction Strategy

Media Contacts



Jobs and Employment Children and Youth