CNIB Employment Skills Bootcamp: Part 1, in Calgary

CNIB Employment Skills Bootcamp: Part 1, in Calgary

[swoosh] ANNOUNCER: Here is an
AMI This Week Shortcut with me, Victoria Nolan. [music playing] TED BONAR: I think this
is a great start for you because this is a time
of self-discovery, a time of reflection
and, hopefully, by the end of the
week, you’ll have a clear path of where we can go
next after this week is over. My name is Ted Bonar. I’m the program lead with the
Career Support and Employment Program here at CNIB Alberta. The Employment Skills
Bootcamp is a week-long event to bring together
youth with sight loss across Alberta to Calgary
for five days to learn about and to expand their
knowledge on what it means to be a job
seeker with sight loss, and how they can be successful
in their employment journey. WOMAN: The world that we
live in is a sighted world. Make sure if it’s been a while
since you’ve had a haircut, you might want to
get your hair cut. You also might want to just
double-check your makeup if somebody is living with you. Just sort of say, ‘Hey,
how does it look today?’ TED BONAR: Resume
writing to cover letter writing to money
management to being aware and publishing your nine
essential skills when it comes to employment, and
looking for work, and maintaining a
job to disclosure. How individuals with sight
loss, or any disability, for that matter, need to be
comfortable in disclosing their disability and be able to
present it in a positive light, and prove to an employer
that, yes, they’re very capable of performing
all the tasks of a job. Yes, I do have a disability. But I still am able to do
all the aspects of the job. And I am encouraged, and
I am enthusiastic about the next steps in this process. VICTORIA NOLAN: A
CNIB donation allowed an all expenses paid
opportunity for 12 participants, including Jocelyn Wilson. JOCELYN WILSON: I came from
a small town in Alberta. And I may have been
able to afford it with the help of my parents,
but it was definitely a huge benefit that
CNIB covered everything. MARGARET VARTY: My
name is Margaret Varty. I’m coordinator of
Community Engagement here at the CNIB
Foundation, Alberta and Northwest Territories. We’re looking at those honed
skills you need to get employed and to gain what you want out
of life, and seeing what that looks like for you
in what might not be the most accessible world. WOMAN: How do I get to work? What kind of technology
do I need to navigate? What does my workspace
look like when I get there? And these are all
things to keep in mind. MARGARET VARTY: I think
from the beginning to the end of this Bootcamp,
all the participants are going to go from being
quite nervous about what their futures looks
like to, at least, having a solid plan of
this is my goal in a year or in five years. And these are the steps that
I need to take to get there. JOCELYN WILSON:
I hope to be more comfortable with where
I want to go in life and how I’m going to get there. And I want to know more people
at the same place I am at. VICTORIA NOLAN:
Many participants expressed loneliness
and isolation as some of their challenges. The Bootcamp provided
an opportunity for connections and
community development with fun activities,
like dinner and bowling. [pins falling] WOMAN: Woo! [clapping] MAN: [inaudible]! WOMAN: That was my first strike! TED BONAR: And one of the goals
of us being here this week is to develop a sense
of community among us. So after you leave here
on Friday afternoon to go back to your
home, towns, or cities, connect with each other. TYLER MATTSON: My
name is Tyler Mattson, and I’m a participant of the
CNIB Employment Bootcamp. It’s a great opportunity
to learn that just because somebody has
a disability, whether it be visual, mental, physical,
that they can still do the job as good,
if not better, than somebody
without a disability. MARGARET VARTY: I think
that employers should hire inclusively because
you’re really broadening your workforce. You’re engaging communities
who you might not have looked at before. And you’re giving opportunities
to people who want to work. TED BONAR: It’s all very unique
to the individual of where they’ll be in a year from now. But what I hope for them
is that a year from now they can call me and say,
‘Ted, you know what, I did it.’ [laughing] WOMAN: Yay! [applause] TED BONAR: If people
want to learn more, they can reach out to us at
CNIB by logging onto our website at or visiting Tune in next week for some
practical career training.

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