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Trillium funding helps support KinBridge's participation in youth employment program

Program committed to employing youth living in and around Waterloo Regional Housing reached over 500 youth over the last three years thanks to an Ontario Trillium Foundation grant
2022-09-30 - YouthForce
(left to right) Top Row: Katrina Guldemond (YouthForce Coordinator at Kinbridge), Melissa Schiedel (Carizon), Dave Cooke (Langs), Zeri Zigeta (Kinbridge). Middle Row: Melissa Young (MPP Representative), Ana Maria Ruiz (MPP Representative), Amie Sider (YouthForce Coordinator), Joe-Ann (Executive Director at Kinbridge). Bottom Row: Krysta Foster (Region of Waterloo), Brittany Kulchar (Carizon), Emily Jaarsma (Greenway-Chaplin) Raman Dhillon

On Sept. 29, 2022, Kinbridge Community Association (Kinbridge) came together to recognize the $728,000 Grow Grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) received in 2019 to support YouthForce, the program committed to employing youth living in and around Waterloo Regional Housing.

The project was completed Sept. 30 with plans to continue as a Social Enterprise.

“Kinbridge Community Association is a valued resource in our community and very deserving of this grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation,” said Brian Riddell, MPP for Cambridge. “The YouthForce employment program has positively impacted the lives of hundreds of people by enhancing their economic well-being. The entire community benefits when we empower our youth with employment and life-skills training.”

With the OTF funds, YouthForce was able to scale up the program reaching over 500 youth, who have been positively impacted by the program, building professional development and meaningful employment opportunities.

In addition to growth, the funding supported the exploration of the program’s development into a social enterprise. With increased program and service delivery YouthForce will develop marketing plans to engage new business networks and organizations; increasing revenue to maintain its impact and progression beyond the life of the Grow Grant.

“YouthForce program partners with four community agencies and Waterloo Region Housing who provide extra resources and supports to remove barriers for participation by youth. This is key,” said Joe-Ann McComb, Executive Director, Kinbridge Community Association.

Kinbridge is committed to engaging community in creating a healthy, vibrant neighbourhood. To learn more about YouthForce or what we do, connect with us here.

The Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) mission is to build healthy and vibrant communities across Ontario. As an agency of the Government of Ontario, and one of Canada’s leading granting foundations, last year, OTF invested nearly $209M into 2,042 community projects and partnerships, which included funding for the Government of Ontario’s Community Building Fund. Since 2020, OTF has supported Ontario’s economic recovery by helping non-profit organizations rebuild and recover from the impacts of COVID-19. Visit to learn more.