Pathways to Employment couldn’t have come at a better time for Shanaly Aitchison. The Orillia Area CDC’s youth wage subsidy program allowed her to get ahead in life amidst one of the most challenging times that we’ve seen in decades. After leaving her former place of work due to a business relocation, she was able to start working with her new employer right away, local entrepreneurs Lyndon Smith and Bev House.

Throughout her first three months with COPPERSMITHWEAR, she took on more responsibility as the full extent of her skill set came into view. Starting as a Web Designer/Digital Marketing Specialist, she gradually transformed into the role of Project Manager.

“This position has helped me gain essential business and planning skills, teaching me more about what goes on behind the scenes of a small business.

I am so beyond grateful for the opportunity provided by the CDC, and all the positive encouragement and email check-ins along the way from Project Officer, Katie Maracle. The consistent, genuine care, and positivity that I’ve received from Katie has been a wonderful breath of fresh air. It’s been very uplifting, and helped my confidence in these hard times to have someone rooting for me every step of the way.

I’m pleased to say the CDC’s Pathways to Employment program, in combination with my role at COPPERSMITHWEAR, has created a solid foundation for my future as a professional Web Designer & Digital Marketing Specialist.”

Shanaly Aitchison