A new program connecting new-to-Alberta job seekers with businesses is proving a success for newcomers, businesses and Wetaskiwin!
In addition to being a designated participant in the Province’s Rural Entrepreneur Program, designed for those wanting to start a business or buy an existing business in a rural Alberta community, the City of Wetaskiwin is also participating in the Rural Renewal Program.
Both immigration initiatives are designed to foster growth in rural communities, with the Rural Renewal Program aiming to address current labour needs and skill shortages in rural Alberta, while also supporting the smooth integration of newcomers into the community.
“For years, we have heard from business owners in rural communities that talent attraction is a major challenge,” says Vern May, Manager of Economic Development for the City of Wetaskiwin. “It’s not just attracting skilled trades and professional positions that’s the quandary, but also how to best nurture the workforce for frontline positions that are necessary to the economic vibrancy of the community but may be entry-level positions.”
Under the Rural Renewal Program, designated communities collaborate closely with local employers to attract, recruit and support newcomers by offering essential information about settlement services. These services encompass a wide range of provisions, from housing and education to healthcare and language training.
“The Rural Renewal Program has helped the City to better assist local employers to find candidates for roles that have been hard to attract or retain staff. Within our first two months of designation through the Province, we’ve been able to assist employers to fill more than 100 jobs, in turn attracting that number of new residents to Wetaskiwin to contribute to the growth of the community,” May says.
Beyond reflecting the City’s dedication to addressing labour needs and fostering growth, participation in the program highlights Wetaskiwin’s commitment to supporting newcomers, ensuring they have every opportunity to thrive and creating a welcoming environment for all.
“It’s very rewarding to see the impact this has on individuals who have the opportunity to come to Canada and create a brighter future for themselves and their families. They’re identifying that what the community has to offer is more than just a job – that’s the starting point. Their introduction to our community is the start of their ‘happily ever after.’”
To learn more about the programs, visit wetaskiwin.ca/1235/Immigration-Rural-Renewal-Stream
More news for Wetaskiwin businesses and job seekers
For businesses and job seekers, the City is collaborating on the Regional Career Connector Symposium, coming up Thursday, Nov. 23 at the Coast Nisku Inn and Conference Centre.
The symposium kicks off at 9 a.m. with three informative morning workshops focusing on effectively managing expectations and enhancing workplace culture. After lunch, the business showcase offers the opportunity for businesses and job seekers to connect.
Learn more and register at careerconnectorsymposium.ubpages.com