It’s Everybody’s Business: Engaging the Private Sector in Solutions to Youth Homelessness
March 7, 2013 (1:30 PM - 3:00 PM ET)
As more industrialized countries struggle with rising youth unemployment, young people with no job or prospects are ill-equipped to be contributing members of an inclusive, healthy and sustainable economy. Homelessness is a common and serious reality for many of these young people.
The business sector can play a critical role in addressing youth homelessness by providing at-risk youth with skills training, employment and apprenticeship opportunities. Yet only a small number of Canada’s employers offer these opportunities.
Raising the Roof, a national charity focused on long-term solutions to homelessness, recently developed a toolkit based on interviews with employers, youth and community agencies. The toolkit provides practical information for employers who want to give disadvantaged youth a chance at a job. It also considers how community employment programs trying to find work for their young clients can best reach out to employers in their communities.
Carolann Barr is the Executive Director of Raising the Roof, a national charity focused on long-term solutions to homelessness. Carolann has over 20 years of progressive senior leadership and program development experience in health and social service environments, including YouthLink’s pre-employment program for street involved youth in Toronto.
Carolann joined Raising the Roof in 2008 as the Director of Research and Community Initiatives. In 2010 Carolann became the organization’s Executive Director. Since then, she has planned and fostered national research efforts, partnership-building and public awareness initiatives aimed at breaking the cycle of youth homelessness. These have included Raising the Roof’sYouthworks initiative; signature annual National Toque Campaign; and provocative public education efforts, including multi-media campaign: Homeless youth have nothing, but potential and the Street House (in pro bono partnership with international advertising agency Leo Burnett).
Amanda Noble is the Manager of Research and Community Initiatives at Raising the Roof where she has led national research on employment programs for at-risk and homeless youth. She is a PhD student at York University in the Faculty of Education where she is researching innovative housing models for homeless youth. Amanda has worked as an anti-poverty advocate and a front-line worker for youth, women, and children experiencing homelessness.
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