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Youth Double Click on a Career at YouthConnect

TORONTO, July 20, 2018 – Today almost 400 youth and youth workers will gather for the award-winning YouthConnect, an annual training event that provides hands-on skills building to open new doors to jobs and people for youth using online tools. With the Toronto youth unemployment rate still hovering at 20% and job precarity on the rise, it’s more important than ever that youth workers and youth have updated career exploration and job-search skills to land that first or next job.

“Every career starts with a connection and online tools can help level the networking playing field,” said Sevaun Palvetzian, CEO of CivicAction. “Although youth are adept at using social networks, they haven’t seized the opportunity to build their professional online network and make connections that will jumpstart their career. YouthConnect acts as that boot camp to bring them up to speed.”

Delivered by the CivicAction Leadership Foundation and LinkedIn Canada, in partnership with Ryerson University and the City of Toronto, YouthConnect gives attendees a unique backstage pass to employers to discover what skills companies are looking for. Hands-on skill building sessions with LinkedIn Canada representatives, networking, and mock interviews with employers will round out the day, leaving attendees with the skills and resources to strengthen their career journey.

“Youth Connect is an accelerator of economic empowerment for our region’s youth,” said Zabeen Hirji, Chair of CivicAction. “The impact of YouthConnect is a great example of cross sector collaboration in action, which is an essential ingredient for tackling big issues. This is a story of committed, passionate leaders from the private, public, community, and academic sector coming together to bring to life a shared purpose—creating pathways for our youth to thrive.”

Now in its fourth year, YouthConnect’s tradition of opening virtual doors for youth across the region will extend farther and deeper than ever before. Programming will be delivered in Toronto, Mississauga and York Region. YouthConnect’s unique “train the trainer” model will allow youth workers and employment counsellors in attendance to share the day’s learnings with up to 10,000 youth across the Toronto region. As part of the day, almost 2,000 LinkedIn Learning subscriptions will also be given out to Toronto region youth and youth workers, giving them access to over 12,000 expert-led online career courses and a curated curriculum just for them.

Throughout the day attendees will also hear from leading influencers and experts such as Jamil Jivani, author of Why Young Men and founder of the Citizenship Empowerment Project and Saadia Muzaffar, founder of TechGirls Canada.

“Digital literacy is critical in today’s workforce,” said Jonathan Lister, VP, Sales Solutions & Canada Country Manager, LinkedIn Canada. “The work being done by CivicAction to arm youth with the digital skills they need to succeed aligns squarely with LinkedIn’s vision to connect every member of the global workforce to opportunity. With events like YouthConnect, we can help to pave a better path for these young people.”


Our thanks to Cision for sponsoring this announcement.

Special thanks to YouthConnect Event Partners, RBC and EY.

For more information or to arrange interviews, please contact:
Jeff Junke
Communications Manager
Office: (416) 309 4480 x 533
Cell: 647-471-9957

YouthConnect is a CivicAction Leadership Foundation event associated with CivicAction’s Escalator: Companies and Youth Moving Up initiative. Escalator connects youth facing barriers to employment with jobs, through collaboration with the public, private and non-profit sectors. Recently a recipient of Toronto Employment and Social Services’ 2017 PAYE Leadership Award for Impact, YouthConnect has held eight events since 2014, training over 750+ front-line youth workers who reach approximately 30,000 youth. YouthConnect has also trained 300+ youth and over 100 employers on 21st century job-search skills.

About CivicAction: Complex challenges need an all hands on deck approach, and collective impact is what CivicAction does best. Our track record speaks for itself; as the premier civic engagement organization in Canada we have nearly two decades of experience creating and implementing effective solutions to the most pressing challenges in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. Just how do we do it? Every four years we hold a Summit to identify which issues are keeping the region up at night. Because we’re CivicAction, not civic chit chat, we then hit the pavement and get to work, leveraging partnerships across sectors to create initiatives that transform our region. To find out more visit or follow @CivicActionGTHA.

Building on a decade of high-impact and award-winning leadership programming, CivicAction launched the CivicAction Leadership Foundation to further elevate and catalyze our region’s leadership potential. With a focus on advancing education, the Foundation harnesses the power of diverse leaders and empowers and activates all voices to influence and shape our region. For more information visit

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