Youth Workforce Preparation: Policy & Practice Within Homeless Shelters

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Over the past year, the CCYP has grown tenfold. From new partnerships and programs to our Youth Council and Fellowships. Get ready for the next level of our 21 Questions for 2021 series! Throughout February, we will be introducing you to our fellows who have graciously found time to put aside their research to share a bit about themselves and their work with you. Tune in weekly, you just might learn something new.


What's your name?

Marche Wilson


What are three words that you would use to describe yourself?

Considerate, Open-minded, Passionate.


What is your most played song right now?

Drake - Passionfruit


What is your educational background?

York University Graduate, BSc Degree in Health & Society


Can you speak about your advocacy work/project?

Prior to Covid, I was a part of a program within a homeless shelter dedicated to youth, named SPOT. This program was funded, and youth were paid by the hour. Considering that this program is not mandatory, it influenced me to challenge the shelter system by investigating whether they do enough to prepare youth for the workforce.


What sparked your passion for it?

Being a part of a homeless shelter and witnessing circumstances first hand.


Why do you think this is important in the Canadian context?

Because youth are the future and if they do not get proper support they will not have adequate skills to support the ecosystem/ environment, let alone themselves.


What does opportunity look like within your advocacy work?

I have the opportunity to support youth like myself.


How can other Canadian youth get involved?

Canadian youth can also offer their ideas and suggestions of how shelters could further support homeless youth with regards to employment preparations.


About the CCYP Fellowship Program:


What made you want to get involved in the CCYP Fellowship Program?

The CCYP fellowship program supports and prioritizes youth workforce development.


What do you hope to bring to the CCYP Fellowship Program?

I hope to advance policy and practice within homeless shelters regarding youth workforce preparation.


What professional relationships are you hoping to establish?

Policy makers and managers who have connections to the shelter system, and youth in general.


What do you hope to accomplish during your fellowship? What does impact mean to you?

I hope to bring light to the gaps that homeless youth are affected by within shelters. I hope that changes can be made with regards to preparing youth for life after the shelter, ie. workforce, and living alone successfully. This could also include finance classes. This would mean the world to me because I understand how useful the SPOT program was for me. I highly doubt that I would be employed by CCYP today if it weren't for SPOT. I wish that everyone could have the opportunity that I did, considering it prepared me well for today.


Interests/Personal Life:


Can you share with us an organization or program that you think others in youth workforce development/employment should be made aware of?

YES, SRDC, YESS, YEP, TYPE, Art Works TO


Which of your previous work/volunteer experiences had the most impact on your current advocacy work?

Being a part of the SPOT program in a youth homeless shelter.


How has that impacted the person you are today?

It made me feel like I had much more potential than before, and It encouraged me to keep going on to better things. This program helped me to realize my true potential, and to never give up. Most importantly it gave me the push to fight for what I believe is right. All youth deserve an equal chance at life, as well as adequate support and guidance.


Recognizing the importance of building a community network, how has mentorship supported you throughout your professional development thus far?

Mentorship has helped me understand time management, and helped me to deal with stress much better than I was before.


Who is an individual/figure that you look up to?

The Leader and creator of the SPOT program.


What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Shoot for the Stars & never give up because you are capable!


Can you share three fun facts about yourself?

I have a puppy, I’m English, I love to travel.


Can you share a goal you have for 2021?

To maintain my health & Start up my own business.



La Préparation Pour La Main-D'oeuvre En Faveur Des Jeunes: Politiques & Pratiques Dans Les Refuges Sans-Abri


Au cours de la dernière année, le CCRJ a décuplé ses activités. Allant de nouveaux partenariats et programmes jusqu'aux Conseil de la jeunesse et à nos bourses de recherche. Préparez-vous au prochain niveau avec notre série 21 Questions pour 2021 ! Tout au long du mois de février, nous vous présenterons nos collègues qui ont gracieusement trouvé un moment pour mettre de côté leurs recherches afin de partager un peu avec vous qui ils/elles sont et leur travail . Restez à l'écoute chaque semaine, vous pourriez apprendre quelque chose de nouveau.