Some Prince George residents may already be seeing the benefits of the government’s commitment to end poverty through a new job training initiative.

The First Peoples Hospitality Program, run by the LaKeCoRe Management & Training, has just finished its 26-week pilot program giving people the certifications needed for a career in the hospitality industry.

Lawney Chabot, president of LaKeCoRe Management and Training said the program was made possible through the Community Employer Partnerships (CEP) program.

“Programs of this nature that provide opportunities for skill enhancements and application are invaluable and the key to becoming gainfully employed.”

The CEP received $196,000 as part of the provinces Poverty Reduction Strategy announced yesterday (Monday).

Speaking in Prince George, Shane Simpson, Minister for Social Development and Poverty Reduction said a key to the strategy is improving communications with municipalities and First Nations in the North.

Communities will also benefit from the housing projects and childcare benefits being implemented province-wide.

Barbara Ward-Burkitt, executive director of the Prince George Native Friendship Center, told MyPrinceGerogeNow the help had been a long time coming.

“We need to make sure people have the supports and services they need here at home and ensure that they feel included and valued by their communities.”