Federal Government Launches ‘I Want to Help’ Platform
The Government of Canada has officially launched its ‘I Want to Help’ program with the purpose of incentivizing students and recent graduates to volunteer to help with the COVID-19 pandemic. The program was unveiled over two months ago and is now available to aid students unable to find summer employment.
COVID-19 has created a unique struggle for students who typically rely on summer employment to cover their tuition and living expenses. The federal government previously had increased funding for the Canada Summer Jobs program to promote summer employment for students. The ‘I Want to Help’ platform doubles down on this initiative, providing another avenue for students to get the income they need for their studies while simultaneously helping community organizations in need.
Students will be able to volunteer to do several work activities such as research, making masks for the public, and much more. The platform already has more than 22000 active placements with more to come as not-for-profits continue adding placements up to the August 21st deadline.
The Canada Student Service Grant holds a value between $1000 and $5000 based on the amount of volunteer hours completed by the student. The student will receive $1000 for every 100 hours worked, making 500 hours worked the requirement to receive the full grant.
The program will run until October 31st, 2020 and is only available to students and recent graduates who are under the age of 30. Applicants must be enrolled as either part-time or full-time student in spring, summer, or fall 2020, or completed their studies no earlier than December 2019.
More resources and information about the program can be found on the ‘I Want to Help’ website. For information specific to students interested in participating in the program, visit the student portal directly here. For information pertaining to not-for-profits in need of volunteers, visit the not-for-profit portal directly here.