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Food-service assistant training will benefit people with disabilities

By Richmond Sentinel

Published 12:27 PST, Wed November 23, 2022

Last Updated: 12:27 PST, Wed November 23, 2022

As many as 30 eligible British Columbians living with disabilities will receive skills training to prepare them for jobs as food-service assistants on the Lower Mainland.

"This project is empowering people with disabilities by helping them develop new employment opportunities in a growing hospitality sector on the Lower Mainland," said Nicholas Simons, Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction. "Participants who graduate from the program will receive the skills they need to find rewarding careers in the food-service industry."

This ministry's Community and Employer Partnerships (CEP) project focuses on providing occupational training and work experience to people with disabilities on the Lower Mainland.

The province is providing more than $550,000 to Semiahmoo House Society to deliver two intakes of its food-service assistant certificate project for people with disabilities training program.

Participants will receive 18 weeks of employability and occupational skills training, including English language terminology and essential skills assessment, four weeks of on-the-job work experience with local employers, and one week of job-search support and followup to assist participants in their job search.

"This training program will help more people develop the necessary skills and experience they need to become food assistants in the region," said Andrew Mercier, Parliamentary Secretary for Skills Training. "This program aligns with our Future Ready plan, which is making it easier and more affordable for all British Columbians to gain the skills, knowledge, and connections to be successful in a changing economy."

Full-time, group-based learning for the first intake of this project has begun. The second intake will start in April 2023. Anyone interested in finding out more about this or other CEP projects can contact their local WorkBC centre.

"This program is designed to provide the participants with both theoretical and applied knowledge and on-the-job experience to become food-service assistants, and find rewarding careers in the food-service industry in the region," said Bea Hadikin, Uniti - Semiahmoo House Society chair. Uniti is the result of three organizations, namely, the Semiahmoo House Society, Peninsula Estates Housing, and the Semiahmoo Foundation, coming together to provide services to people in the region.

Funding for this project is provided through the Project Based Labour Market Training stream of WorkBC's CEP. CEP investments are targeted at projects that support an inclusive economic recovery. CEP projects support B.C. job seekers' training and work experience and help businesses and communities address labour market challenges. Through CEP, the province invests $15 million annually in communities throughout B.C.

This announcement is part of StrongerBC's Future Ready plan. Future Ready is making education and training more accessible, affordable, and relevant to help businesses grow and prepare British Columbians for the jobs of tomorrow.

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