Prince’s Seeing is Believing (PSiB) Visit Day in Rexdale, Toronto
October 28, 2014
On Sept 18th, a group of senior Toronto business leaders stepped out of their offices and into the Rexdale/North Etobicoke neighbourhood to learn how they can work with the community to supercharge local youth employment.
The Prince’s Seeing is Believing Visit Day invited 15 corporate leaders to meet with inspiring youth who call Rexdale their home. The challenge to our business leaders: move beyond the cheque book, and work hand-in-hand with community organizations to develop initiatives that truly make a difference.
“Prince’s Seeing is Believing is a powerful leadership program that gives senior business leaders first-hand insight into youth unemployment in their communities” said Amanda Sherrington, President & CEO of Prince’s Charities Canada.
The Prince’s Seeing is Believing Visit Day began on the bus, guided by a young Rexdale MC: at five local stops, our executives were given surprise monologues from youth performance group Nomanzland. The acts painted a compelling picture of the neighbourhood that is not often captured by the media – the strengths and challenges of Rexdale through the eyes of its youth.
At the Rexdale Community Hub, the executives engaged with youth taking positive steps to find a career, with supporting community organizations including Microskills, YMCA, Toronto Employment Social Services, Humber College and Breaking the Cycle.
The dialogue focused on issues of poor transit, low commercial density, need for added newcomer employment supports, and a gap in business presence in the area.
The Prince’s Seeing is Believing Visit Day marked the first major event of an innovative place-based pilot project in Rexdale led by Prince’s Charities Canada and the Prince’s Canadian Responsible Business Network (PCRBN).
The result has been collaborations between our corporate leaders and the Rexdale community through job placements, internships, mentorship, industry tours, HR diversity assessments, and “hire local” initiatives.
We thank our senior business leaders who participated from: RBC, KPMG, Scotiabank, George Weston Limited, Brookfield RPS, First Canadian Title, Retail Council Canada, Carillion Canada, PWC, LCBO, Rogers, Telus, and Telus Health. Special thanks to Rexdale’s MP Kirsty Duncan for joining us on the day, and Federal Employment Minister Jason Kenney for joining the final discussion.