Career Starter Program

What could your company do with $20,000 in wage subsidies?

Thank you Career Starter employers for exceeding all targets. Applications are no longer being accepted. Please continue to visit our website for program updates.

The Career Starter Program will facilitate the transition of barriered youth into the labour market and increase their knowledge of the sector’s needs through recent and practical work experience.

Program Description

The program provides 50% of the youth’s salary to a maximum of $ 20,000 in wage subsidies for a 3 to 9-months placement. This will help the employer adopt a diverse and inclusive work culture while satisfying their need for skilled labour. In addition to the wage subsidy, the program can provide additional supports including:

  • Internal job coach on the job;
  • Relocation supports, should they be required;
  • Access to BioSkills Recognition Program upon completion of the Career Starter program;
    • A BioReady recognition upon successful completion of the BioSkills Recognition Program;
    • Entry in the BioSkills Match tool for employers seeking qualified talent; and,
    • A corresponding compensation report for their job function (if available)
  • Onboarding tools for their employers including a diversity and inclusion HR policy template; and on-going monitoring to ensure program success.


Participants must be:

  • Aged 30 or under;
  • Identifying as a barriered youth including the following but not limited to:
    • Involuntary NEET (not in education, employment, training) for at least 4 months
    • with disability
    • Indigenous
    • A recent immigrant and/or refugee
    • A visible minority
    • LGBTQ2 +
    • Homeless or at risk of becoming homeless
    • Living in a low-income household
    • Residing in a rural or remote location
    • Living with family care responsibilities
    • Affected by substance use
    • Currently in, coming out of, or who have had involvement in the justice system
    • In or ageing out of care
    • Living with low levels of literacy and numeracy
  • Be Canadian citizens, permanent residents, or persons who have been granted refugee status in Canada; and,
  • Legally entitled to work in Canada according to the relevant provincial and Canadian legislation and regulations.

Employer must:

  • Maintain an internal process for supervising and mentoring for the participant;
  • Provide a full-time position for at least 3 months to 9 months;
  • Provide a job coach for a minimum of 2.5 hours a month;
  • submit a progress report on a quarterly basis; and,
  • contribute as at least 50% of the total salary of each participant.

For specific application and eligibility details, please download the full application package.


Uncertain if you qualify? Don’t count yourself out.
Contact Mary Carr at (613)235-1402 ext. 222 or [email protected]


Funded in part by Government of Canada’s Youth Employment Skills Strategy Program