The turnout was huge for the job fair at Pat Porter this Thursday. There were many people who came looking for a job, and many companies that were looking to hire.

Eastman Immigrant Services Director Freddy Muganza says not everyone knows where to start looking, so events like these are great to match people up with jobs that suit them. 

“Sometimes you might not have good connections, but you need some other person to connect to another. So we are that kind of bridge that is connecting the employees to the employers.” 

During the pandemic, they had job fairs virtually, and for that they had smaller turnouts of around 30-50 people. 

This was the first in-person job fair they held since the pandemic, and Muganza is happy to say they had a large turnout of 235 people. 

“This one is the first one in the person (since the pandemic), so you imagine that maybe the attendance won't be that great, but we are impressed.” 

People at the pat porter for the job fair

He says it’s great to finally be back face-to-face, as it’s easier to make connections.  

“For people who are looking for jobs, it is very good because they will meet with their employers, they talk to them, they can even read their intentions if they're willing to take them in or not,” he says. “And then for the employers, it is also very good to see how many people are seeking to get into their system.” 

He notes that events like these are important, as helping people find jobs means helping people toward independence and stability. 


Southern Health 

Southern Health has a lot of variety in occupations available right now. 

Kathryn Reimer from the Southern Health booth says they are really targeting healthcare providers like healthcare aids, nurses, and home care attendants. 

“Positions that are helping other people and that direct provision of care to other people, be it clients or residents, people that live at home, are in hospitals, or in long term care facilities.” 

They also have plenty of support jobs available. 

"Our housekeeping, our food services, social workers, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, respiratory therapists,” she says. “Everything from doctors to the frontline provision of care is available.” 

She says any education level can apply at Southern Health, it’s all dependent on the position that’s available or what job people are interested in. 

“We have the entry level jobs where a high school diploma is great.” 

Reimer says there are some great initiatives in the province right now. 

For instance, if you are interested in becoming a healthcare aid, you can take a five day micro credentialing course to learn the occupation and see if it’s right for you. 

“And then take a bridging course to become a certified healthcare aide.” 

They also have plenty of job openings for those with post-secondary such as physiotherapist, occupational therapist, speech pathologist, and nurses. 

They can help you find an occupation based on your interests and education level. 

"We've got schedulers, administrative assistants (requiring high school diplomas), we've got lab technicians, we've got pharmacists.” 

She notes the career fair was a great experience. 

“A lot of people are really engaging with us, looking for opportunities of what jobs are available, flexibility, both part-time full-time,” she says. “And just the willingness to talk and explore different occupations and where they might fit within ours.”  

Reimer was happy to interact with people, learn what their interests are, and help give them opportunities. 

“I spoke with someone earlier who hadn't been in the job market and was just entering the job market, and they were super scared and excited to be here,” she says. “And so to see that and to help them on their journey in gaining employment has been wonderful.” 


Loewen Windows 

Currently Loewen Windows has a lot of job opportunities available. 

Krista Scherpenzeel from the Loewen Windows booth says it was nice to connect with so many talented individuals looking in the job market. 

“The individuals that we've been speaking with are very skilled, whether they're new immigrants or they're local residents, I would say lots of skill in the room.” 

She says Loewen Windows is known for hiring manufacturing, but they don’t have those opportunities available at the moment. 

“So we're not looking for entry level, we're looking a little bit more for skill, some professional designations and specific education background.” 

Scherpenzeel says it’s refreshing to come to a job fair and talk to people face to face because it can be difficult to make that solid connection online. 

“Nothing beats the human element, so it's been great. And I think everyone is just happy to see so many employers in a room too, to have their face-to-face time with us.” 

She is thankful to Eastman Immigrant Services for all the effort they put into organizing the event.  

“I think we were anticipating a lot of traffic, and I think that they delivered on the traffic. But it's not just quantity, there's a lot of quality people in the room.” 


Clearview Co-op 

Clearview Co-op, and many other entry level places, are looking for more employees at this time of year. 

Daryn Clefstad from the Clearview Co-op booth says they are looking for people to work at their gas bars, c-stores, and grocery stores. 

“We have two grocery stores, one in Saint Malo and one in La Broquerie. And so with summer coming up, they tend to have a busier season and so we require more staff at those.” 

Their gas stations tend to have higher turnover rates, which means they are always looking to hire. 

"And this time of year is when the turnover really starts to happen, but we're consistently hearing from the managers of our gas bars and c-stores that they're looking for part time employees.” 

She notes they also recruit for higher level positions. 

“Entry level jobs seem to be a bit of a revolving door. But it depends on the position you're advertising for,” she says. “But for the most part, when we are recruiting for higher level jobs, we've been receiving a decent amount of resumes.”