Mature workers invited to Passport to Employment program

Colin MacLean
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KENSINGTON – Anne Richard was retired for all of six months before she started going stir-crazy.

Kathy Livingstone, with the Tourism Industry Association of P.E.I., speaks to a group of prospective students for the Passport to Employment program. Colin MacLean/Journal Pioneer

The Summerside resident was a teacher for 32 years at various local schools before retiring in June.

She ended up having far too much time on her hands for her liking and is now looking for new experiences in the workforce.

“I have to do something, I have to get back out there and be with people again,” she laughed.

“You can only do so much housework.”

One of the first places Richard has turned to explore her options is the Passport to Employment Program.

The federally funded but provincially managed program offers courses designed to get people aged 55-64 back into the workforce.

It usually has several classes a year in various communities across the Island.

The next class will be held in Kensington and starts Feb. 4 and runs until March 21.

This particular class will be held in partnership with the Tourism Industry Association of P.E.I. (TIAPEI) and will be focused on finding employment in the tourism industry. 

Both groups held a public information session in Kensington earlier this week.

It’s an industry that is expecting a busy year, said Kathy Livingstone, with TIAPEI.

“2014 is definitely a big year … which in turn will require a lot of people working in the industry. Early indications are that we hope to see a big increase in the number of visitors,” she said.

Mature workers like Richard are exactly the type of people a lot of employers are looking for to fill the types of jobs that are open in the tourism industry, added Michael Gaudet, with Passport to Employment.

They’re reliable, motivated, resourceful and perhaps most importantly of all, flexible in terms of hours, said Gaudet.

Passport to Employment provides them with the skills they need to put those abilities to work, he said.

“It’s two sided. What is it they want to do? And how do they match their skills to be able to apply (for a job)?”

Anyone interested in attending a Passport to Employment session can do so by contacting them through their website at www.matureworkers.caor by calling Yvonne Doyle at 620-3857 or Gaudet at 620-3436.


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Recent comments

  • Dale MacDonald
    January 17, 2014 - 10:18

    This is a wonderful course for any mature person who is unemployed, wants to either look for a different line of work or wants to try to obtain something similar. I've taken this course I believe it was in 2010, and it really opened my eyes as to extra personal attributes I didn't even realize I had to offer, and this course also helped me update and polish off my resume, and also taught me how to conduct myself when going to an Questions that I may be expected to be asked and how to appropriately answer them. The people running this program also encourage you later on, when you are prepared, to go to different places, to ask questions, and perhaps leave a resume if you are interested. I have nothing but praise for the program. If you're thinking of looking for employment that is a bit different, or want to remain working for awhile longer....go to an information meeting and find out about it. At that time I was on EI, discouraged, and had totally "given up" on finding something suitable, and when I saw this ad in the paper, I said "What do I have to loose, but a few weeks of my time? At least I'd be doing something positive for myself" I did go, took the course, met some wonderful instructors and fellow classmates, and YES, I did find employment! Thank you "Passport to Employment!"

    January 17, 2014 - 09:56

    Good way to ensure our young people keep leaving, give the meager seasonal work they need to scrape by on to people collecting a pension. Volunteer work can be quite be rewarding.

    • Mary Linn Bridges
      January 18, 2014 - 14:34

      I think Slip is an idiot. Are you saying that a person over 55 is too old to work. Problem is if you think about it ,is that meager seasonal work won't feed a family all winter. You try it and then comment again. Thank you.