Youth in Northern B.C. to benefit from access to new entrepreneurship and leadership programs
The Government of Canada is investing in the next generation of change-makers in British Columbia helping to grow fresh talent and innovative solutions for the future.
March 2, 2023 – Prince George, British Columbia – PacifiCan
The next generation of innovative thinkers exists in communities throughout British Columbia. Creating opportunities for youth with diverse talents, abilities and backgrounds in B.C.’s rural communities will ensure that they have access to the same events and programming as youth in urban centres. That is why PacifiCan is investing in projects that bring opportunities to young entrepreneurs throughout British Columbia.
Today, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada (PacifiCan), announced $233,083 in funding to expand Young Entrepreneur Leadership Launchpad (YELL) Canada programming in Northern British Columbia.
The Minister made the announcement today as 2023 iCubed (Invention, Innovation, Integration) kicked off its virtual annual summit, which brings together Grade 9, 10 and 11 students from rural and remote communities across Canada to learn entrepreneurial skills.
A registered charity, YELL exposes students to diverse guest speakers and mentors and operates Canada’s first high school entrepreneurship program eligible for university credits. The program uses the principles of entrepreneurship to advance young leaders in any field, equipping them with the skillset they need to help them become creative problem solvers.
The funding announced today will go towards delivering YELL classes in five northern British Columbia communities: Terrace, Smithers, Vanderhoof, Prince George and Quesnel. This investment will also support YELL’s delivery of two future iCubed Summits.
YELL programs will reach over 180 students, with a focus on gender equality, engaging Indigenous students, and ensuring marginalized youth have access to programming. In addition, 2,000 future iCubed student attendees are expected to benefit from this investment. Over the next three years, these students will enter the workforce in rural B.C. communities better prepared to pursue entrepreneurship or apply these new skills in any career.
“Business development takes passion, energy and creativity – qualities that youth often have in abundance. The training provided by YELL Canada is preparing the next generation of entrepreneurs and creative thinkers in Northern British Columbia. The skills, support and confidence acquired by these students will open doors for them and help them become the next generation of community builders.”
- The Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada
“With the support of this funding from PacifiCan, YELL looks forward to growing our impact as we serve teachers and students in rural and remote communities across B.C. Our team is committed to providing equal and equitable access to entrepreneurship programs to students in the North while connecting youth to a supportive community of mentors that can guide them as they navigate their careers.”
- Amit Sandhu, Volunteer Interim Managing Director, YELL Canada
PacifiCan is the federal economic development agency dedicated to British Columbians. PacifiCan works with partners who are building innovative businesses, creating quality jobs, and supporting inclusive growth throughout our province.
PacifiCan opened new offices in Prince George, Fort St. John and Prince Rupert on November 17, 2022 to serve businesses and communities, including Indigenous communities, across Northern B.C.
Since 2013, YELL has delivered over 100,000 program hours to over 1000 secondary school students, involving nearly 600 business leaders and mentors in the process.
PacifiCan previously provided $475,000 to support YELL to successfully deliver pilot project classes in seven Northern British Columbia communities: Terrace, Houston, Burns Lake, Vanderhoof, Prince George, Quesnel, and Fort St. John.
Office of the Minister of International Development and Pacific Economic Development Agency (PacifiCan)
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