Wednesday, November 28, 2018, the MIRE conference room was transformed to accommodate an anniversary party! In light of MIRE’s 16th year of operation, partners, employees, program alums were invited, in addition to all those who’ve helped enable MIRE to become a go-to reference for all things regarding employment preparation.
A festive ambiance could be felt throughout MIRE’s offices. Golden balloons and a candy bar provided the perfect setting to celebrate the last 16 years. Why celebrate 16 years of operation, you ask? In North American culture, the term sweet sixteen refers to an exuberant celebration marking the point where a girl enters into womanhood. It’s a moment for families to come together to celebrate a moment of pure bliss with their dear child. For MIRE, it’s an occasion to run a parallel to a symbolic celebration where adolescents gain independence and often start working. Not bad for an organization that helps individuals reintegrate into the labour market.
MIRE’s mission is to assist adults living in conditions of social exclusion or difficulty and integrate or reintegrate them into the labour market. The organization boasts a positive balance sheet and has recently announced that it doubled the number of groups it assists each year. Thanks to the Portage Association and the André et Lucie Chagnon Foundation, the program, which was founded in 2002 has enabled assistance to more than 3000 people that weren’t active in the labour market. What’s more is that the organization will perform its 150th cohort this month. With their objective of helping clients in need more quickly and efficiently, MIRE chose to increase the number of their assisted groups from 7 to 16. This means that MIRE is helping more people that are in urgent need of employment, that have no social net, or roof over their head.
The clientele, which is in increasingly challenging situations, has needs that are requiring MIRE to adapt their assistance to ensure success. One of the solutions to alleviate the situation was to create partnerships with community organizations. These partnerships generated numerous successful stories, one of which being Sylvain. Sylvain was a participant referred by La Maison du Père, where he lived throughout the entirety of the program while trying to find work and an apartment. This Montrealer finished the program successfully and has now found employment as an assistant manager in a well-known hotel in Montreal. In a touching speech, Sylvain told his story and expressed his heartfelt gratitude towards MIRE. “While I was living a difficult time, MIRE’s assistance in helping me find a job and La Maison du Père providing a roof over my head completely changed my life. I’m proud to have a job and my own roof over my head. The MIRE program gave me the tools I needed to get back on track.”
This 16th anniversary was also an occasion to honour those people who have gone through the MIRE program and that have had the courage to take their future in hand.