Ottawa provides international youth internships in Atlantic Canada

More than 800 eligible youths to complete internships in more than 40 developing countries under International Youth Internship Program

Ottawa provides international youth internships in Atlantic Canada

The federal government is bringing international internship opportunities to young people in Atlantic Canada under its $24.5-million funding for the International Youth Internship Program (IYIP).

The Memorial University of Newfoundland’s Fisheries and Marine Institute is among eight total partners receiving over $4.2 million in funding.

“Canada is committed to mobilizing and inspiring young people from diverse backgrounds to get involved in international development,” said Ahmed Hussen, minister of international development. “The International Youth Internship Program creates meaningful opportunities for Canada’s youth to use their voices and creativity to build more just and prosperous communities, here at home and around the world.”

The institute is collaborating with the Atlantic Council for International Cooperation on this IYIP project that will provide 190 internships. 

The internships aim to improve employment skills through placements focused on environmental sustainability, adaptation to climate change and improving gender equality.

Focus on youth in diverse communities

Hussen also recognized that Canada has historically denied the rights of Indigenous Peoples, who still face systemic racism, discrimination and injustice, according to the federal government.

Canadians aged 18 to 30 – especially those who identify as Indigenous or racialized or as members of the 2SLGBTQI+ community as well as youths living with disabilities – will be selected by IYIP partners and paired with organizations in developing countries to work in sectors such as communications, education, social services, human rights, aquaculture, agriculture, and more.

The employment experience has not been fair for many Indigenous Canadians. Overall, nearly six in 10 (58.6%) of these workers have experienced discrimination in their current workplace. Black, Indigenous and other peoples of colour (BIPOC) in Canada see racial discrimination as a barrier to a successful career, according to another study.

More than 7,000 Canadian youth benefit from IYIP

In February, the federal government announced it is investing over $5.4 million to support Indigenous economic development in Southern Ontario. The investment will improve skills development for youth and create more than 130 new jobs.

The 2023-28 iteration of the IYIP was first announced in Victoria on Feb. 6, 2024. The focus is to reach those who face barriers to employment, such as youths living with disabilities and those who are Indigenous, racialized or members of the 2SLGBTQI+ community, according to the federal government.

Over the last 25 years, more than 7,000 young people from Canada have benefited from a variety of global citizenship programs like the IYIP.

Saskatchewan is also investing an additional $1 million to increase the capacity for the development of skilled trades in the province.

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