Youth Engagement

The Vision

We want to revitalize rural and remote communities by attracting and retaining youth. We will encourage the retention and in-migration of young people by ensuring they have access to diverse social, educational and employment opportunities. The Charlton Sustainability Hub will support a local circular economy and offer skills training and modelling through hands-on demonstrations. It will provide youth with the tools and experience they need to redefine success and empower them to create meaningful and authentic futures.

The Challenge

Northern Ontario is facing a population decrease as a result of youth-out migration. Over the past decade, youth have been leaving rural and remote communities to seek further opportunities for education and employment. However, statistics and research show that once youth leave, often, they do not return to rural areas.

The Push and Pull Factors

Education and Employment Opportunities

Rural youth are more likely to plan on staying in their hometown if they see future employment opportunities in their own community. There is a perception that urban areas offer more job opportunities and that rural communities limit the ability to achieve high income and educational and career opportunities.

Social Ties

The attachment that youth feel towards their hometown can be related to their desire to return or stay to build a family. This can include their perception of the safety and cleanliness of the environment, community services and programs, and social support from family and friends.

Demographic and Socioeconomic Characters

Research indicates that gender and age are significantly associated with the intention to leave rural and remote communities. For example, one study found that the greatest proportion of those who plan to leave are 15 to 19 years old. The socioeconomic and demographic characteristics of a town can influence the reasons why an individual may want to leave.

Are you a youth with ideas? We'd love to hear from you.