Noor Hamadeh-Elkhayat is a customer service representative at the Royal Bank of Canada, with plans of moving her way up the career ladder. But just a short year ago, Noor was jobless and in serious risk of losing her apartment. After spending countless months job searching, sending out hundreds of resumes and not receiving a single phone call back, Noor found herself in a desperate situation.
“Faced with increasing debt and the real possibility of losing my accommodation,” Noor says, “I began to lose hope and I didn’t know what to do.”
That’s when Noor was referred to the Ontario Works program at the City of Toronto for help.
“Our first priority was to address her financial situation,” explains Ontario Works caseworker Michael De Gale. Ontario Works provided Noor with financial assistance to help her pay for food and housing costs so she didn’t end up homeless. Once the immediacy of her financial situation settled, they put together an employment service plan to help Noor find employment.
Michael worked with Noor to develop her resume, finesse her interview skills, and scheduled her to attend interview workshops and mock interviews. Shortly after Noor learned how to better market herself to employers, she received a job offer from RBC.
“Because Noor was able to get the supports that she got from Ontario Works in her time of need,” says Michael, “she’s now a long way from where she started.”
Today, Noor is thriving in her new role at RBC and sees a great future for herself there.
“For me, my role right now is a stepping stone,” she explains. “It’s not just a job, it’s a career path.”
Noor credits her current success to the help she received from the City of Toronto and Ontario Works.
“Ontario Works gave me a hand up,” she explains. “I think they help you believe in yourself, they help you market your skills, and eventually, you get there.”