As a National Project Manager for one of Canada’s largest charities I led the most successful National Internship Program ever – Dan Trepanier

Our efforts translated into collaborating and coaching 100’s of staff and volunteers, guiding 13,000 Interns, 7,451 Mentors  in 787 Canadian Cities, Towns, Villages, 90 Ministries, Crown Corporations, Agencies totalling $163 million in Government Funding over 14 Years — WHEW that’s a mouth full of impressive stats! 

It wasn’t easy and we had our fair share of ups and downs!

Much of the credit to our success went to the talented professionals across Canada, the Interns and their Mentors. 

The Federal Public Sector Youth Internship Program (FPSYIP) has emerged as one of the most successful YMCA National Programs ever, with over 4 out of 5 participants using the paid internship program to either find gainful employment within (or beyond) Government Service, or as a springboard to pursuing higher education. That translates to over 12,000 Canadian youth over a 13 year period since 1997, all under 30, most of whom were non-grads, many of whom represent significantly underserved Canadian minorities, social service recipients, members of First Nations, Francophone’s and more. Canadian people, all… paired with more than 7,450 mentors and dozens upon dozens of YMCA facilitator’s and guest speakers spanning the entirety of our Provinces and Territories.

  • 13,000 Canadian Youth
  • 7,451 Mentors
  • 100’s YMCA Staff, Volunteers
  • 787 Canadian Cities, Towns, Villages
  • 90 Ministries, Crown Corporations, Agencies
  • $163,000,000 Government Funding in 14 Years


We offer a safe, supportive environment where young people can learn valuable life skills, employability skills, career planning, and develop their sense of self.

The Program benefited the groups of young people who need it most and who have the highest unemployment rate: it set a full 50% of the internships for youth who have not completed high school (NG – Non Graduate Interns) or face multiple barriers to employment, 30% for high school graduates (HS- High School Graduate Interns) and 20% for youth who have graduated from College or University (PSG – Post Secondary Graduate Interns).

The YMCA’s commitment to youth is well-known, from our earliest days in Canada over 160 years ago to today, we have made youth development one of our highest priorities. Within FPSYIP we did much more than simply helped a young person find a job and/or return to school. We offered a safe, supportive environment where young people  learned valuable life skills, employability skills, career planning, and developed their sense of self. We have an excellent track record of training tomorrow’s leaders in a culture of peace and social inclusion.

Sponsored by the Federal Government

Delivered in partnership with the YMCA, the Federal Public Sector Youth Internship Program (FPSYIP) placed interns in host federal government organizations and agencies.

The Government of Canada valued FPSYIP and the YMCA from both a policy and operations perspective. Repeatedly we heard of how ‘strong a delivery partner we are and how accountable/transparent the program was. — Dan Trepanier, National Manager

When we collaborate we add value, impress with the strategic planning we do, our infrastructure nation-wide is exemplary, and the thought work we do in youth work, planning and evaluation is superior. In 2011 the federal government completed the first wave of its strategic review of all their funded programs. In July 2011 FPSYIP had been declared a big success, the government believes that it has met all of its objectives and accordingly, the program begin a wind-down process, with a final program closure date of March 2013.

The federal government representatives who shared this information with us emphasized how valuable a partner the YMCA in Canada has proven to be in delivering effective, efficient, and successful programming.

They were most impressed with the outcomes of the program, noting that it is one of the longest-running employment program funding contracts they have ever had.

The 20-month notification period represented just how important the federal government perceives the longstanding partnership with the YMCA, and a great respect for our staff members. Our ability to deliver this program so successfully directly impacted the federal government’s decision to partner with the YMCA to offer two short-term youth internship programs focused on the environmental and non-profit sectors in 2009 and 2010.