February 19, 2009

Summer Job Spotlight ... Plenty of opportunities available in Manitoba!

In my last post, I profiled the services and programmes offered by the Government of Ontario - I will likely be doing a follow-up post soon with more information that was given to me by former colleagues.

This time, I'm heading west and looking at what the Government of Manitoba offers to students and youth.

Similar to Ontario, there are wage subsidy programmes that compliment job search centres that assist students and youth through every step of the job searching process.

And remember, even though it is only February, it is never too early to begin your job search!

Hometown Green Team: This programme provides non-profit and rural municipal governments with funds to hire students. Of course, there are various requirements that must be met; however, there is the opportunity to obtain up to 100% of funding that covers the hourly wage and other mandatory employment-related costs (MERCs), such as vacation pay.

In order to participate in this programme, students, or unemployed youth, must be between the ages of 16 and 24. As well, you must reside in rural Manitoba and be finished your studies for the year if you are still in high school.

Urban Green Team: This is the urban counterpart to the above-mentioned Hometown Green Team. The programme is the exactly the same; however, in order to qualify, students and youth must reside in Winnipeg, as opposed to rural Manitoba.

Manitoba Youth Job Centres: Similar to the Service Canada Centres for Youth run by Service Canada, these centres offer assistance to students and youth seeking employment. Specially trained counsellors can help you every step of the way - from searching for a job, to composing a resume, to preparing for an interview.

Furthermore, they also offer a host of services to employers, including a free job posting service. As well, through the Odd Jobs Service, staff in these centres can help you fill temporary/casual positions on a moment's notice.

STEP Services: This programme provides opportunities for students and youth to gain valuable work experience while working for the Government of Manitoba, its related organizations and agencies, or employers involved in various government initiatives.

In order to be considered for a position, you must be at least 16 years of age. Applications are to be completed online and there are a range of positions available. And the salary ranges from $8.72 to $11.30 per hour - not too shabby given the current state of the Canadian economy!

Manitoba Labour Board: Regardless of where you are working, it is always a good idea to know the labour law that applies in your jurisdiction and how to contact the local labour board.

If you have an issue with your pay, vacation time, working conditions/health & safety, harassment, discrimination, and so on, contact the labour board to find out what your rights under legislation.

I cannot stress how important it is to be aware of what your rights are - not that every employer is evil, but I've heard of many horror stories (and even experienced a few myself!) and it pays to know what you are entitled to.

Don't become your boss' or your coworker's doormat - stand up for your rights, and if you feel you can't, the labour board is there to help!

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