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Starling Community Services.

Restaurant Owner Gives Lutherwood Clients the Opportunity to Shine


Caroline is no stranger to the hiring process. As the owner of four Tim Hortons franchises, employing strong workers is a vital part of what keeps her restaurants thriving.

So, connecting with Lutherwood’s Employment Services seemed like a win-win partnership for Caroline three years ago, and it is one that is still going strong today with no end in sight. Her fourth and newest franchise on Paisley Road in Guelph celebrated its grand opening this past February, and she attributed Lutherwood to helping make it a success.

“We did some job fairs that Lutherwood helped us advertise for on their social media,” Caroline said. “And they were constantly supporting me, helping us find people to potentially hire, and generally checking in on how we were doing.”

Since connecting with Lutherwood, Caroline has employed over fifty clients.

“We give everyone a fair chance to work with us, regardless of whether they come from Lutherwood or not,” Caroline said. She added that all her employees must meet a certain standard, and if they do, she is happy to welcome them onto her team. “At the end of the day it’s about the individual we’re bringing in. Your team is a good reflection of your business.”

One of their hires happened to have a disability and was struggling on his journey to finding employment. Caroline worked with Lutherwood and with the client to create a position specifically tailored to his abilities. It was important to her not to assume what he could and couldn’t do, and in the end, they were able to find him employment with tasks that he could carry out with confidence.

Canada Map
A mural in one of Caroline's restaurants focuses on community building and togetherness.

Caroline knows that the quick service restaurant industry generally has a higher turnover rate, and that not everyone will want to grow their position into a long-term career. She wants everyone to be given the opportunity to do so, but she is happy to provide future references.

“Some of our team members are working to better themselves and gain experience. Some are even in school and when they finish their studies they quit to go into their fields. I’m happy for them but it’s tough to see them leave!”

On June 7th, Caroline was invited to the 29th Annual Guelph Wellington Employer Recognition Awards, where Lutherwood Employment Services presented her with an award for her involvement with the programs.

“It seemed so unreal,” Caroline joked, “They are the ones helping me find and hire great people, and then I get an award? Amazing!”

Lutherwood has various Employment Services programs and incentives for employers. Learn more about these programs here.

"I volunteered at Lutherwood to help a friend and I fell in love with the organization and its mission. It feels like a big family and that is reflected in our work. I was able to refer friends to our services and they got the help they needed. I see every day how much we make a difference in people's lives and it is a privilege to be part of it."