Since 2020, Trans Mountain has sponsored the Outland Youth Employment Program (OYEP) to successfully run three youth summer employment camps. Trans Mountain proudly supports OYEP as the program offers land-based education, training and work opportunities to high school-aged Indigenous youth. Throughout the program, participants complete various certifications, gain hands-on work experience and take part in cultural learning.

During the camp, participants earn a variety of tickets, including a chainsaw certification, S100 Fire, Financial Literacy and hours of work experience involving hands-on forestry work. OYEP also partners with local Indigenous communities who provide cultural knowledge keepers to engage youth in activities and discussions, expanding their understanding of their own cultures and their place within them. Various cultural activities included a drum-making workshop/ceremony and learning how to play the traditional game of Lahal. OYEP is committed to providing a culturally affirming and welcoming space.

To ensure participant success, the program offers various supports. A mental wellness coordinator orchestrated group exercises focusing on mental health and communication. The program also provided Employment and job readiness support. In 2022, the Trans Mountain Employment and Training Team attended the camp, hosting a mock interview day and helping youth develop resumes.

OYEP proved to be an amazing experience for participants. “OYEP was one of the best programs I have ever been in. I enjoyed being around people, making new friends and learning new things,” said past participant Aaliyah Toney of Chawathil First Nation. “I loved working outdoors and getting to see how many jobs are out there that I never knew of. Overall, it was an amazing experience.”

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