Local youth are working, getting paid and earning valuable skills.
Fifteen teenagers are a part of the Youth Employment Program offered by the Fort Saskatchewan Boys and Girls Club this summer. The goal is simple, to prepare youth for the workforce.
"A lot of skill-building. Seeing what areas they need help in and filling in the gaps to get them ready for work," said Nicholas Starko, the Youth Employment Program facilitator.
The teens work 20 hours a week from Monday to Thursday. On Fridays, they get together and work on their soft skills.
Taylor Fleming works at A Bundance Bakery, she told MIX 107 she's already learned how to bake donuts, cupcakes, cookies and danishes.
"They're all really nice and accepting of you," said Fleming. "I'm still learning, but I'm getting better at it."
Carter Goruk has taken nicely to his job at Home Hardware. He enjoys the yard work and serving customers.
"I've learned punctuality, time management and dedication initiative. If you have them early on, when you get into a full-time career you don't lack those skills," he said.
The program offers four weeks of job placement and two weeks of learning. Included in the learning portion are a budgeting workshop, interviewing and communication practices and working as part of a team.
All of the participants are between 13 and 17.
"Some of them have really taken to their jobs. They went in with the right frame of mind to work hard and what to expect. I think everyone had a successful start to the program," added Starko.
The youth are paid $100 a week though the Boys and Girls Club. Businesses also provide an honorarium.
Other businesses involved in the program include Fort Cinema, Station Square Co-op, Chris' No Frills, Kinny's Sweet Retreat, Fort In View Golf Course and more.
Twice But Nice recently donated $5,000 to the initiative. The program started in early July.