New program to boost youth engagement in rural community boards 

A new pilot program is offering learning opportunities for up to 20 high school students in rural communities across the province by getting them involved in rural municipality boards and NGOs.

The Youth on Board program is offered by the provincial Department of Fisheries and Communities. The goals are to give young people a chance to be mentored, encourage new members to join rural community boards and groups and allow the organizations to benefit from the ideas and viewpoints of young Islanders.

“Volunteer boards are often looking for new members and the perspective of young people in our province. This program will give youth valuable leadership skills and build their community ties, while also providing boards with energetic new members.”

- Fisheries and Communities Minister Jamie Fox.

Tammy Rix, chief executive officer of the West Prince Chamber of Commerce, says her group is looking forward to getting young Islanders involved and hearing new ideas for their group and their region.

“Sometimes change is hard when you are comfortable with the way things have always been done. Having a youth involved with the chamber will give us an opportunity to mentor and learn at the same time. Our board will gain a young person’s perspective on many things that we can take into consideration as we make decisions.” says Rix.

Adam MacLean, executive director of the Tyne Valley Oyster Festival, says it is important for all organizations to have a balance of experienced and new members on their boards. “It helps create viability within the communities and organizations across PEI. Youth who are active within structured organizations gain valuable experience from their roles and we benefit from their fresh ideas.” 

Organizations interested in mentoring a youth through this program can contact Sonia Dixon – Community Development Officer .

High school students interested in the program can visit: Youth-on-Board - Student Application and Guidelines for more information and visit Youth-on-Board Student Application to apply.

Media contact:
Ron Ryder
Department of Fisheries and Communities

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