This month students across Winnipeg headed back to school, eager to reunite with their friends and share stories about their summer holidays.
Among them were Mariam, 14, and Ayobami, 15.
The two teens were able to share about a special opportunity they had recently, along with 34 other youth, where they took part in a two-day Newcomer Youth Camp hosted by the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service.
Not only did they learn about potential careers in emergency services, but they also met new friends and likely had a lot of fun.
Camps like these connect the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service to different communities in Winnipeg, helping youth in these communities learn about and explore potential careers with the City of Winnipeg in emergency services.
“We’re giving them the opportunity to see what firefighting, paramedicine and 9-1-1 telecommunications looks like in the City of Winnipeg. They’re getting the opportunity to interact with first responders to learn a variety of skills,” said Lisa Gilmour, the assistant chief with the WFPS
“They can take those skills and decide if that may be a future career for them.”
Mathew Joseph, a program manager with Immigrant and Refugee Community Organizations of Manitoba (IRCOM), said the camp was well-received by the youth.
After practicing answering 9-1-1 calls, learning about the education needed to be a paramedic and riding an aerial ladder high into the air, there were definitely some who left the camp interested in a career as a first responder.
“They get to learn and explore opportunities that people like them can be in. When they arrived here, their preconceived idea of what a firefighter or a paramedic looks like, shifted,” Joseph said.
“It could be them. They saw themselves in the role.”
The WFPS partnered with four community organizations to offer the program - Elmwood Community Resource Centre, IRCOM, Newcomer Employment and Education Development Services (NEEDS Inc.), and the Aurora Family Therapy Centre.
This initiative is connected to our Newcomer Welcome and Inclusion Policy, which aims to create an inclusive and equitable city where all residents feel welcome and can thrive. As part of the goals of the policy, we are working to create a city without racism and a representative workforce.
Career exploration camps are one valuable tool to introduce youth from diverse backgrounds to career pathways at the City of Winnipeg
Other City information