MP Merv Tweed Announces Federal Government Support for Youth Project

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BRANDON, MB — Federal government funding for Skills Link, an initiative focusing on youth, was announced today by MP Merv Tweed. With Brandon University President and Vice-Chancellor Dr. Deborah Poff along with Career and Employment Youth Services (CEYS) representative Richard Greer on hand, MP Tweed underlined the critical need to ensure that youth have access to further education and to potential employers.

The coordinator of BU Cares in the School of Education at Brandon University, Dr. Karen Rempel is the author of the project proposal, which will be receiving part of the financial support announced. Brandon University and the Optimist Club of Brandon will share a total of $92,000 in federal Skills Link funding.

Dr. Rempel’s project, entitled Facilitation of Research and Reporting Activities Leading to the Development of Rural Manitoba Youth Community Plans, aims to coordinate research activities and develop Youth Community Plans for 11 Manitoba towns.
“The funding is greatly appreciated. This financial commitment supports our goal of trying to work with youth in rural, aboriginal and northern communities,” she said. “This also recognizes the importance of education in youth’s future and our resolve to facilitate youth’s success.”

The project’s scope will include the creation of a survey to identify strengths and barriers facing youth, though consultations and workshops in an effort to develop a five-year plan.
“We’re extremely excited about this,” said Greer, who also represented the Optimist Club of Brandon for the announcement. “When we develop programs, they’re based on very obvious needs that we experience with our young people who visit us (at CEYS). The ability to develop a five-year strategy will really allow us to be proactive and maybe meet some of those needs before they become critical.”

The Skills Link program, which is an offshoot of the federal Youth Employment Strategy program, aids youth facing challenges to employment, like being single parents, Aboriginal youth, young persons with disabilities, recent immigrants, youth living in rural and remote areas and high school dropouts. Life Skills promotes access to education and the development of the broad range of skills and work experience needed to enter the job market.

For more information about Skills Link, visit

For more information, please contact:

Joanne F. Villeneuve
Communication Officer
Brandon University
P: (204) 727-9762


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