Jenai connected with Career Connection in January 2021 and was one of the first people to receive support through the new My EO Model in the Region of Peel.
Prior to Covid-19, Jenai was volunteering full time within a childcare setting. While she had struggled to move into paid employment within this field, she was valued for her role and loved her work with kids. Similar to many people’s experiences, when Covid-19 hit, Jenai was forced to leave her volunteer position within a childcare setting and stay home to stay safe. Jenai and her family coped during this time but it was difficult and Jenai missed everything that her previous role had brought to her life.
From day 1, Jenai and her family reiterated that her goal was meaningful work. Jenai had a wealth of volunteering and co-op experience, including working with children in childcare and school based settings as a teacher assistant. Working with children was Jenai’s passion, something she was very proficient at and something that brought a smile to her face when discussing it with her job coach, Angelica. Jenai was enthusiastic, committed and had a lot to offer any potential employer with a strong resume highlighting a wide variety of skills, strengths and interests.
Jenai, her family and Angelica connected right away. As evidenced by her parents, “We felt at ease, comfortable and for the first time in a long time, felt we were not just in good hands, but with someone who was going to truly advocate for our daughter. We are incredibly grateful to have her. She told us she would advocate for our daughter and she has!”
Jenai participated in skills and strength based assessments alongside Angelica to determine suitable job matches. Almost every result pointed to working with kids. After a few outreach calls to childcares, the perfect match was made with Lakeshore Community Childcare Centre in Etobicoke. After two successful interviews, Jenai was hired as a screener and childcare assistant in February 2021.
The transition to employment for Jenai was seamless from the onboarding process – successfully completing her first day of work, then continuing to learn the duties of the job and building professional rapport with colleagues and the children. Jenai has proven herself to be an adaptable and amenable employee. The children are so comfortable with Jenai, and the staff enjoy working with her on a daily basis. Jenai is already being mentored to advance at her place of work and gain experience in a classroom. She has even secured a reference from the Director for Exceptional Worker Commitment.
While Covid-19 continues to pose challenges to businesses, Jenai, Lakeshore Community Childcare Centre and Career Connection will continue to work together to support overall success. Undoubtedly, great things are in store for Jenai and her employment journey. “Our experience to date with [Career Connection] has been outstanding. We feel like we have a true partner as we navigate all the challenges that come,” shared Jenai’s family.
If you or someone who know is interested in learning more about accessing employment services with Career Connection, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 905-542-2694.