On Monday, Federal Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau announced $13 million for the Youth Employment and Skills Program, to help support approximately 1200 jobs for youth in the ag sector. 

She says the program helps to eliminate barriers to employment by providing meaningful work opportunities for youth wanting to pursue a career in agriculture.

The Youth Employment and Skills Program offers support for 50 per cent of wages to a maximum of $14,000 to agriculture employers hiring youth. 

Employers that hire youth facing employment barriers will be eligible for 80 per cent of the cost of salaries and benefits, and may be eligible for an additional $5,000 to address specific obstacles to employment.

The list of employment barriers follows.

·         Indigenous

·         youth living with a disability – including physical, mental health related or learning disability

·         racialized youth (formerly visible minority)

·         recent newcomer to Canada (within 5 years)

·         single parent

·         living in a low income household

·         early school leaver of high school

·         residing in a remote, northern and/or fly-in community

·         living in an Official Language Minority Community

·         2SLGBTQQIA+

Employers can apply between February 27, 2023 and March 27, 2023 for their project to be considered. 

Under the program, applications from Indigenous applicants will be prioritized for the 2023-2024 program year. 

Application forms for the YESP are available here, additional information, can be found by contacting aafc.yesp-pecj.aac@canada.ca, or calling: 1-866-452-5558.