The Lakeshore Restaurant: Case Study
Youth Help was established in 1974 as an agency to provide social, educational, recreational and employment opportunities to the youth in Elizabeth Saskatchewan. The Lakeshore Restaurant case took place in Elizabeth, Saskatchewan who partnered with Youth help, a non profit agency, to run as a training facility, provide a culinary training and restaurant service program for Native Youth. The objective of this agency was to keep kids busy in the core area of the city that at that time was experiencing the highest crime rate per capita and most of that crime perpetuated by the youth. At this time, the Lakeshore Restaurant and training program faced many struggles: the restaurant was lacking proper funding from the government thus restricting the approval to turn the Marina into a full service training restaurant, the lack of knowledge base of the youth, and the serious fire which destroyed the kitchen. The Lakeshore Restaurant case focuses on the decision to re-open the restaurant with the insurance settlement thus providing continued educational opportunities for the youth or to reassess the needs of the youth and plan accordingly for their future development.
The course is comprised of life skills, job readiness training, and on the job training for individuals. There is also program offer counseling, orientation, work experience and follow up support to participants and graduates offered by the staff. •
A variety of sources provided funding for the restaurant. Monies for the development of the training program were provided by the provincial Office of Advanced Education and Manpower. •
The Restaurant was nominated for both the Commonwealth Youth Award and the annual Business Excellence Award given by the Saskatchewan Department of Tourism and Small Business. •
Data from Phase I and II made notable positive impacts. There was a greater percentage of graduated employed full-time after the program than before, and those graduates held more stable jobs. They were able to improve their punctuality, a greater desire to work and greater confidence in their abilities.
Nial Graham, the chair of the Board of Directors had mentioned that in order to make informed decisions they did not meet as often as they should have. They did not function well as a board and the executive director would deal them as he could. This in turn, created a lack of information from the executive director to the board. •
The board did not have an analysis of the problems that they were either running into and they did not have a good long-term overview of what they were going to do. In other words, there was lack of communication and no action plan in place. •
The young people chosen for the program had no full time work experience. The first group of students who experienced the program, 42.8 percent had no work history, 42.8 percent had casual work experience and only 14.2 percent had any full time work experience. Seventy-five percent of students had a Grade 10 education or less.
The training program lasted seven months, three of those months are spent just waking them up and the remaining months are spent working with them and finding them a job placement. However, those who remained employed, very few went on to make above minimum wage. •
The costs of welfare and prison and alcohol and drug treatment and everything related to the hard core group of unemployables was greater than the cost of running the restaurant itself and the subsidies that were required to make it work. •
The recreation program was being run on the volunteer basis because of the lack of funds. Staff had been laid off at the restaurant. •
From Day 1 of the restaurant opening, the funding started to decrease because the government expected that the young people would be trained and would become better at their jobs which means the costs would go down....
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