The Grande Prairie Regional Association of Volunteer Organizations has launched an expanded version of its traditional Wired2Hire program.

Applicants are now being accepted for Wired2Hire Reboot, which, in addition to offering the “Core 5” certifications, including First Aid (Standard C with CPR & AED), Food Safety, Rent Smart, and customer service, will be diving into a plethora of job and life skills. Executive Director Carol-Ann2 Pasemko says the federally funded program will also focus heavily on fundamental digital and green skills.

“They’re all going to come out of there with digital skills because digital skills are a big thing… if you can’t open a computer and operate a word document, you’re a dead duck,” she says.

“You’re looking at skills that employers really want, especially now that COVID-19 has brought home some real challenges that need to be met.”

Pasemko says the free 12-week program aims to lend a hand to young adults ages 18-30 who are underemployed, unemployed, or facing employment challenges. She says they plan on offering more than just employment skills, as they hope to tailor the programming to individual needs.

“If they need a GED, then on that day they’re going to work on getting their GED… if they need a referral, like for finding a place to live, we are going to do that,” she says.

“We are going to get them to the places and the people they need to see and meet in order to decrease those barriers.”

Pasemko says part of the program will take place out of the classroom, and will involve work placement scenarios for all applicants. She adds it’s not going to be as simple as whoever has space open for potential new employees.

“We’re going to place them with employers that meet their interest, some of these kids will go into retail or food service, but more because they have an interest in that,” she says.

“The ones who do want to work in a law office, or do something else, we are going to work with employers to try and place them there.”

You can find more information, including application forms and timeline on the Grande Prairie Regional Association of Volunteer Organizations website.