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Vancouver school trustee seeks expansion of program letting teens work with seniors

Last Updated Jan 29, 2018 at 5:43 pm PDT

(Kenny Mason, NEWS 1130 staff photo)

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Calling it a win-win situation for teenagers and the elderly, a Vancouver school trustee is hoping a motion tabled at Monday’s board meeting will be approved at next month’s meeting.

Lisa Dominato is pushing for the expansion of a program which has already seen four high school students earn credit by volunteering as care aides at seniors’ homes.

“People recognize our aging population is growing rapidly and we know that many students are looking for meaningful work right out of school and the dual credit program offers that,” she says.

Dominato adds the partnership with the Vancouver Community College, in place since 2015, could easily expand to offer more than the current two seats available every year and a growing shortage of care aides across the province would lead to students helping fill that void.

“They earn credit both towards their high school graduation, but also toward their post-secondary, so it helps expedite their entry into the workforce and then, we’re helping support our healthcare system.”

Dominato says her proposed expansion of the dual credit program also has support from the BC Care Providers Association.