Free Kootenay employment training program goes virtual

Kootenay Career Development Society’s RAFT program is a five-week course


For the first time, Kootenay job seekers will be able to prepare themselves for rewarding careers in the retail, accommodation, food service and tourism sectors from the comfort of their own homes.

Kootenay Career Development Society’s RAFT program has gone virtual in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The free five-week training and certification program is being conducted entirely via an online learning platform to adhere to physical distancing guidelines while enabling participants to connect with one another.

The virtual setting is more accessible to job seekers who might face barriers to attending in person, such as lack of transportation or childcare. Additionally, participants build digital literacy in this online setting. It is also a supportive and positive environment in this time of self-isolation and physical distancing.

RAFT prepares individuals to work in restaurants, hotels, retail stores and other hospitality and tourism settings. Participants can gain certifications like Serving it Right, WHMIS, SuperHost and Food Safe. They learn how to create effective resumes, conduct job searches, build networks and make industry connections that will help them land the job they want.

In addition to helping job seekers, the RAFT program benefits local businesses and employers by helping prospective employees increase industry-specific skills that will be in demand once in the recovery stage of the pandemic.

The program is free and offers food, clothing and childcare subsidies, as well as completion bonuses.

The next RAFT program will run May 25 to June 25 online.

To apply, participants must be legally entitled to work in Canada as a citizen/permanent resident or protected person; not a full-time student; and unemployed or precariously employed. Participants must have access to a computer and the internet. If interested in participating in the program, submit a resume and a cover letter expressing your interest in the program to

One participant said: “The program changed my life. It gave me the skills, connections and confidence to go out and get a job.”


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