Youth Mean Business assisted over 79 eligible participants (18 to 29 years of age) in the Victoria Capital Regional District (all communities) to enter the labour force and develop and/or enhance their entrepreneurial, employability and occupational skills through the development of a formal business plan, mentorship and training provided by recognized Training Institutions.

Through this program, non EI-eligible youth with a sound business concept receive assistance to develop a strong concept into a formal business plan. Each participant develops and implements a customized participation plan which outlines tailored activities and financial supports, designed to meet the individual needs of the participant. Participants take an average of 6 months to complete the program. Each participant is provided with training and business coaching, encouraged and supported to develop and/or foster a mentorship relationship with a business leader or expert.


Youth Skills BC Entrepreneurial Pilor was a 7-week participant-driven program designed to assess and address suitability for self-employment, support business plan development and deliver small business management skills, devoting special attention to the strengths and challenges of older workers pursuing self-employment solutions. The project provided assessments and employment or self-employment assistance to eligible participants. Participants determined through self-assessment which employment solution stream was suitable for them.

  • Completed interview and needs assessment as part of program intake
  • Week of structured assessments and introduction to self-employment to ensure participants had a comprehensive understanding of the realities of pursuing self-employment, and their personal suitability for self-employment
  • Opportunity for participants to select the most appropriate stream – either self-employment or employment assistance
  • Assessment of transferable skills and abilities
  • One-to-one coaching with additional supports addressing the individual needs of the participants
  • Assisted participants in creation of realistic business plans/career goals
  • Trained practical application of small business management or employability skills during the research and supported business plan development/supported job search components
  • Utilized Solution-Focused Counselling approaches to address employment/self-employment barriers

The program was available to those in the Nanaimo, Ladysmith and Cowichan areas.