An initiative of the Cape Breton Partnership, the Cape Breton Connector Program connects work-ready professionals, students approaching graduation, local and international graduates and newcomers with community leaders, established professionals, and employers willing to give of their time and talent to help arm Connectees with the tools they need to excel in the Cape Breton – Unama’ki job market.
Connector Program Coordinator Katie Jamieson says the program helps newcomers navigate their new community in a number of ways. “Like many rural areas that consist of clusters of small communities, word of mouth is key.” says Jamieson. “The connector program helps new comers and new graduates’ access not only the hidden job market, but make lasting connections with their community that really make the island feel like home. That’s the magic of the program, helping someone find their place and dig those roots deep in our communities.”
For Faranak Beigmohammadi, the Cape Breton Connector Program has been a worthwhile and positive experience. “I would recommend it to jobseekers in Cape Breton,” said Beigmohammadi. “The most beneficial thing about the program is the networking and connections that it brings, which plays a crucial role in finding jobs in Canada.”
The Connector Program heavily relies on its Connectors, the established professionals across the island that are willing to volunteer time to meet with Connectees both near and far. “Our connectors are amazing! They are always willing to make things work and help out, even if that means meeting with someone four communities over” says Jamieson. “They take the time not only to meet with them in-person or virtually, but to take the time to sort through their contacts to find the right fit. They are the links that makes the program succeed.”
Town of Port Hawkesbury Mayor Brenda Chisholm-Beaton is one of many active participants in the Cape Breton Connector program. Mayor Chisholm-Beaton sees it as an opportunity to showcase the benefits of the region to newcomers and rising professionals, connecting people to potential opportunities and other contacts in the community. “Our time and effort are important and valuable to a person who is new to the community, or new to the workforce, and may require assistance and guidance,” says Mayor Chisholm-Beaton.
“This program can amplify success by expediting the results and minimizing the learning curve that comes from navigating a new community,” continues Mayor Chisholm-Beaton. “It’s important that we—as well connected and experienced community and business members—give others a hand up and extra help in order to enable access and success. The Connector Program is a winning relationship builder for both Connectees and Connectors, and I recommend anyone interested in expanding their networks locally to reach out to the Cape Breton Partnership and the Connector Program.”
If you would like to learn more about the Cape Breton Connector Program, please visit https://capebretonpartnership.com/initiative/cape-breton-connector-program/ .