Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) works to build a stronger and more competitive Canada and to support Canadians in making choices that help them live productive and rewarding lives. The department has a range of programs and services to assist individuals, groups and communities, often through partnerships.  Co-operatives are eligible for many of these programs.

The Youth Employment Strategy (YES) helps young people, particularly those facing barriers to employment, obtain the information and gain the skills, work experience and abilities they need to make a successful transition into the workplace.  National and provincial co-operative organizations and co-operatives themselves have used YES programs to employ youth into the sector and develop experience and training programs.  Service Canada provides detailed program information.

Several departments participate in the YES Career Focus Program, including Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada that has funded a number of agricultural co-operatives to employ youth.

The Worker Co-operative Fund, Tenacity Works, is a self-sustaining investment fund for start-ups and expansion of worker-owned co-operatives in all regions of Canada. This fund was orginally created with the financial support from HRSDC and is now entirely run by the Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation (CWCF).