Lynette Frenchy, right, talks with Debbie Shea, indigenous relations/business development at Vancouver Island Powerline, on Wednesday at the Stz’uminus Career Fair.

Stz’uminus residents network with over 20 employers at career fair

Stz’uminus First Nation residents had a big opportunity on Wednesday to network and hand out resumes to some of the top employers in the mid-Island.

In total there were 21 businesses and organizations with positions available that set up around the gymnasium at the local community centre on Shell Beach Road for the Career Fair.

“We wanted to give people first and foremost in the Stz’uminus community an opportunity to engage with a lot of employers in one space, at one time close to where they live,” said Stz’uminus employment counsellor Hayden Johnston.

Similar job fairs held in the past have been much more sporadic.

Students as well as those from nearby Stz’uminus reserve communities in Oyster Bay and Chemainus all had the opportunity to speak firsthand with representatives from the 49th Parallel Grocery, A&W, Microtel Inn & Suites, Coast Salish Development Corporation, Town of Ladysmith, Tilray, Esso and Husky gas stations, Western Forest Products, Tim Hortons, Ladysmith Marina and Vancouver Island Powerline, just to name a few.

There was also a special cultural performance, allowing for Stz’uminus traditions to be showcased and better understood by prospective employers.

The goal was to attract between 50 and 100 participants and in total 70 people made their way through the doors.

Johnston said this year’s event was a success that he hopes to build on going forward as an annual career fair.

“One of the things that we strive to do is to create connections between the Stz’uminus community and the Ladysmith community so having an event like this really speaks to reconciliation and bridging the gap between our two communities,” he said.

“I just thank all the exhibiting organizations for coming in and making it successful and to the community of Stz’uminus because without them none of this would be possible.”

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Erica Peall, team leader with Husky and Esso gas stations at Oyster Bay and Tina-Marie Heinrich, marketing & research manager with Coast Salish Development Corporation.

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