Friday, August 18, 2017 — Over 250 people gathered at City Hall in celebration of this year’s 94 Youth Futures graduates. The graduation ceremony is traditionally an eclectic mix of events and this year was no different. A potluck dinner serving cultural delicacies opened the night, and the youth themselves provided the evening’s entertainment in the form of a fashion show, live painting session, and spoken word poetry.
Program partners and champions attending the event included Honorable Mayor Jim Watson, MPP Nathalie Des Rosiers Counsellor Mathieu Fleury, Rogers representative Heidi Bonnell, Ottawa Community Housing CEO Stéphane Giguère, and two of this year’s employers, Sara Lemieux from Borden Ladner Gervais and Karen Lemaire, from Bruyère Continuing Care. Sara Lemieux, is also an OCH Foundation board member, spoke about BLG’s 5 years of fostering relationships with participants as an employer partner. “We have collectively taken great pride in keeping in touch with our Youth Futures students and celebrating with them when they have been accepted into University programs, or have competed various milestones in their professional development.”
Mayor Jim Watson also gave his praise to the program and its ambitious goal of accepting 150 youth in 2018.
About Youth Futures
Each year, over 300 youth apply to participate in Youth Futures, with 90 selected annually and 98% going on to complete the program. Since its conception in 2008, Youth Futures has served over 600 youth from Ottawa Communities. Over 80% of these youth come from within Ottawa Community Housing.
Youth Futures is delivered with the support of the City of Ottawa, the University of Ottawa, and dozens of other organizations leading organizations from Ottawa’s public, private, and not-for-profit sectors.