Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, was in the Nanaimo area Saturday, and stopped by COCO Café in Cedar to chat with workers and have lunch. (KARL YU/News Bulletin)

Governor General of Canada hopes businesses follow lead of Vancouver Island café

Governor General Julie Payette hopes businesses become inclusive like COCO Café, near Nanaimo

The Governor General of Canada hopes more businesses become as inclusive as a café on Vancouver Island.

Governor General Julie Payette, on a four-day tour of B.C., visited COCO Café at Cedar, near Nanaimo, Saturday. She had lunch and saw the workings of the business, which provides employment for people with developmental disabilities. Payette said one of the reasons she decided to stop by was to see the “social conscience that it has.”

Payette said there should be more inclusion and with talk of a labour shortage nationally, she spoke of ways to make it easier for people with barriers to find employment.

“By having the work experience because then afterwards they gain confidence,” said Payette when asked about helping people find work. “People (will) gain confidence also that this is something that will work and it’s good for their business, so it’s a synergy. If you don’t have the experience, then people don’t want to hire you and then it just rolls and rolls, so it has to be blossoming.”

Payette, a former astronaut, said people shouldn’t be afraid to follow COCO Café’s model.

“Dare to dream. Dare to make that move because sometimes the hardest is to make the move … it’s very similar to space travel, [but] once you get up there you’re fine. It’s a will and I think many people have it and it’s so heartwarming and also rewarding,” said Payette. “People don’t realize that it’s so rewarding to work with people and help them through their journey. Afterwards you really feel good.”

Payette will head to Victoria next, where she will spend the rest of Saturday and all of Sunday. Her tour concludes Monday in Comox.



reporter@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Traffic delays: Saturday work added to Highway 1 construction schedule

Work continues on dangerous stretch between Leigh Road and West Shore Parkway

VIDEO: James Bay wolf released into wild of western Vancouver Island

Conservation officers confirm wolf is from Discovery Island

Canadian Tire Fix-A-Heart campaign raises more than $75,000 for Royal Jubilee Hospital

Donations will help purchase infusion pumps for cardiac care units

Supreme Court bans Victoria man from practising law

Jeremy Maddock received a law degree in 2016 but never completed articling

Victoria shops avoid plastic bags, despite bylaw being voided

The city is working on getting the bylaw re-established

VIDEO: Driver guilty in Saanich crash that left 11-year-old with catastrophic brain injuries

North Saanich woman convicted on one count of dangerous driving causing bodily harm

Swapping grape varieties can help winemakers adapt to climate change: UBC study

Report says 56% of wine-grape-growing regions would be lost if global climate warms by 2 C

Alberta premier wants feds to approve Teck mine for benefit of First Nations

Kenney: ‘Surely [reconciliation] means saying yes to economic development for First Nations people’

Filming for Resident Alien begins in Ladysmith

Aliens and excitement take over the streets of Ladysmith during new TV series

NDP suggests easing secondary housing rules for B.C. farmland

Lana Popham proposes guest homes not just for relatives

After four sexual assaults in the same B.C. park, RCMP ask women not to walk alone

Four sexual assaults took place in Glen Park over two months

The Three Bears are down to two after baby bear carving stolen from his perch in Island community

Thief repeatedly kicked it and dislodged it from cement and rebar

Most Read