Some 75,000 businesses and organizations across Canada on Nov. 7 welcomed hundreds of thousands of young visitors who were excited to come to work with their parents.
It was the 18th annual Take Our Kids to Work (TOKW) day, which takes place on the first Wednesday of November every year.
I was very proud when he asked could he come and delighted to give him an insight into what I do.
— MP John Weston
The program was established in 1994 by The Learning Partnership, a Toronto-based national charitable organization that works to champion strong public education in Canada.
The first TOKW event, where students spend the day in the workplace of a parent, relative, or friend, was held in the Greater Toronto Area in 1994.
Today, more than 250,000 students participate across the country each year. The program is geared toward Grade 9 students, or students in their Senior 1 year in Manitoba and Secondary III year in Quebec.
As part of their registration, TOKW day participating organizations are also eligible to participate in the annual challenge for the Canada’s Outstanding Employer Awards.
Employers are judged based on how they engaged the students at the event and how they promote the benefits of early career exploration and the importance of staying in school, such as through mentoring, internships, apprenticeships, co-op placements, or career days.
Toronto Hydro, for example, has been inviting teens to its premises for a decade now, teaching them about fleet operations, electrical awareness, engineering, and emergency preparedness.
Government establishments are also on the list of participants, including the offices of some members of Parliament.
MP John Weston, who represents the constituency of West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country in B.C., brought his teenage son, Jake, to Parliament Hill on Wednesday.
“I was very proud when he asked could he come and delighted to give him an insight into what I do,” said Weston.
He was also impressed that his son met so many people during his Wednesday off school.
“He’s actually had quite an exposure in a very short time,” Weston said.
“I’ve been here a few times, but it’s really interesting watching the MPs argue,” said Jake. “It’s kind of funny as well.”
Jake was also impressed with how organized and how well things were put together on Parliament Hill.
“I went to a conference … and there was this huge plate of sandwiches and the room was really nice … lots of expensive equipment and stuff,” he said.
But he is unsure whether he’d like to follow in the footsteps of his father.
“It’s too early [to say],” said Jake.
On TOKW day parents get to spend some quality time with their children, and at the same time it is a very educational trip for the kids.
The teens get exposed to a professional work environment and have a chance to see how the skills they learn in high school can be used outside of the classroom.
The Learning Partnership also notes that children will gain valuable experience and insight into why it’s important to stay in school.
The employers who participate in the day’s activities also benefit from being recognized on the website of The Learning Partnership.
The Epoch Times publishes in 35 countries and in 19 languages. Subscribe to our e-newsletter.