Focus Groups Research Project

2023 Youth-Led Research & Recommendations for a more Equitable Youth Employment Ecosystem

Hearing directly from youth about the barriers and issues they face in their employment journey helps First Work gain better understanding of the needs of Ontario’s young workers so our network of Employment Service Providers (ESPs) can best support those needs.

Following focus group studies, First Work’s 2023 Youth Council cohort has developed the following evidence-led recommendations.

Inspired by First Work’s drive to create talent pipelines for underrepresented groups, the Youth Council set out to understand the challenges that diverse youth have in the construction industry.
Read their findings.

For #Youth entering the workforce, mentorship can be a crucial tool towards meaningful work. Through no fault, youth often begin with a smaller network of mentoring forces in your life. This report sheds light on the pivotal role mentors play in shaping your trajectory and aspirations. Read the report.

2022 Youth-Led, Youth-Focused Research & Recommendations for Improved, more Equitable Employment

Over several months, First Work’s Youth Council undertook research to better understand the barriers faced by fellow young people seeking employment in Ontario.

This youth-led research sought to determine how government policy can change to support the employment success of young people, no matter where they live in the province. First Work’s Youth Council facilitated focus group discussions with young people from across Ontario, centralized on 4 core themes: impact of automation on employment, improving the school-to-work transition, better navigating first jobs to career paths, and the BIPOC youth employment journey. These focus groups were small in nature (under 10 participants) to encourage meaningful discussion in a virtual environment, while also encouraging solutions and recommendations to improve their experiences.

The purpose of these focus group studies was to hear directly from youth about the barriers and issues they are currently facing in their career and employment journey. This research helps First Work gain a better understanding of the needs of Ontario’s youth and figure out how our Employment Service Providers (ESPs) can support them.