The Employment Program of BC (EPBC) offers integrated and accessible services to help British Columbians be successful in finding and keeping work. As part of the EPBC team led by GT Hiring Solutions, VIVRS provides specialized employment and life skill services to residents of Nanaimo who: 

• Identify themselves as living with a disability
• Have multiple life challenges that make employment difficult
• Are women who have experienced abuse or violence.

All services at VIVRS are tailored to fit your needs. When you meet with a VIVRS Specialist, you will work together to choose the services that will be of most benefit. Examples include:

• Vocational assessments to identify career interests, transferable skills, and personal strengths
• Specialized assessments to identify accommodations needed in the workplace, or during training
• Research to help you make a solid decision about the future
• Personal counselling to overcome the impacts of abuse
• Individual coaching to help you manage a disability or challenging life circumstances
• Connection to community supports that improve health and functioning
• Employment counselling to help you reach your goals
• Access to skills training to prepare for employment
• Job placement and work experience placements in your area of interest
• Assistance with your job search, resume and interview preparation
• Development of customized employment situations
• Practical support when you begin work.
Nanaimo Location & Staff
Click below for more information on staff or location details.
VIVRS Services are delivered out of the Employment Services Centre (ESC) located at:
241 Milton Street - CLICK FOR MAP
250-753-4225, *250-591-1122
The VIVRS Specialists at this location are:
· Ingrid Tanasichuk
- Executive Director
Ingrid has overseen all aspects of VIVRS’ development over the past 20 years, and sets the standard for innovative, customized employment and life skills services for people with disabilities and other significant life challenges. Ingrid holds a BA in Human Service Administration, Diplomas in Vocational Rehabilitation, and is a Registered Rehabilitation Professional. Known for her integrity and focus on quality, Ingrid is one of the most sought-after and experienced professionals in this field on Vancouver Island today.
· Liz Laird
- Operations Manager
Liz has over 15 years of experience ensuring that the agency’s day-to-day operations run smoothly and efficiently, as well as reporting on all contracted deliverables. A Registered Community Support Specialist (RCSS), with a Mental Health Worker Certificate and in-depth knowledge of the new Integrated Case Management system, Liz is renowned for her caring approach, strong interpersonal and problem-solving skills, and multi-tasking abilities.
· Sue Christiaens
- Human Resources Manager
Sue brings over 20 years of experience in human resource management, project management, financial management, emergency preparedness, occupational health and wellness as well as team development through the BC Public Service. Sue’s positive energy, in-depth knowledge, and focus on solutions provides what VIVRS needs as our agency grows to meet the needs of people with disabilities and life challenges throughout Vancouver Island.
· Jacquie Larsen
- Administrative Assistant
Jacquie is a lifelong learner, known for her immense energy, organizational abilities and attention to detail. With over 18 years of experience as an office and small business administrator, Jacquie’s strong work ethic, patience and problem- solving abilities are a boon. Jacquie receives great satisfaction from making others’ lives easier and providing high quality service to the clients and staff of VIVRS.
· Darcie Davidson
- EPBC Quality Assurance Manager
Darcie’s expertise in communications, media and public relations has resulted in a surge of successful job placements for VIVRS clients. With an MA in Professional Communications and 6 years of experience, Darcie’s ability to build relationships lies at the heart of her own, and her clients’ successes. She is committed to creating a socially diverse and healthy community for all.
· Sylvia Wende
- EPBC Specialized Employment and Life Skills Consultant
Sylvia’s background as a Social Worker, Certified Career Development Practitioner, Job Club Leader and International Coordinator scratches the surface of what she offers VIVRS’ clients. An exceptional counsellor and coach, with over 12 years of experience in employment services, Sylvia offers warm, dedicated support with a focus on growth and development, and encourages everyone around her to fulfill their potential.
· Deborah Provencher
- Job Developer
Debbie is a Registered Rehabilitation Professional with a BA in Therapeutic Recreation, an MA in Adult Education and 35 years experience working with individuals with disabilities. Debbie’s in-depth understanding of mental and physical health issues, ability to devise unique and effective methods of training, and expertise in enhancing clients’ health and employability allows her to empower individuals to reach their goals.
· Jan Coleman
- Job Developer
Jan is a Certified Rehabilitation Practitioner with over 15 years of experience helping individuals with disabilities and life challenges to achieve sustainable employment. Her commitment to helping people make healthy, positive changes in their lives and build confidence in their abilities is evident in her work. Humour, common sense and creative problem solving are integral components of her approach.
· Elaine Stewart-Prince
- EPBC Employment / Life Skills Specialist
· Alejandra Dominguez
- Team Lead CES and Job Development
Alejandra has a Master´s Degree in Adult Education from the University of British Columbia. She specializes in Training and Human Resources Management . For 9 years, Alejandra has created life-long learning opportunities for individuals – people with disabilities, international students, immigrants and individuals living in post-conflict situations - to support the discovering and development of their full potential. Alejandra is passionate about coaching others for success, especially when faced with significant barriers to employment or big life changes.
· Liz Friday
- EPBC Employment Specialist / Life Skills Specialist
· Noah Rutley
- EPBC Employment Specialist and Customized Employment Services
· *Michelle Cooper
- EPBC Employment Specialist and Life Skills Consultant working with women who have a history of violence/abuse
255-2000 Island Highway North - CLICK FOR MAP
250-729-5627 ext 5007
Hiring Work BC Centre at Brooks Landing Mall
The VIVRS Specialized Employment and Life Skills Consultant at this location is:
· Sylvia Wende
- EPBC Specialized Employment and Life Skills Consultant
Sylvia’s background as a Social Worker, Certified Career Development Practitioner, Job Club Leader and International Coordinator scratches the surface of what she offers VIVRS’ clients. An exceptional counsellor and coach, with over 12 years of experience in employment services, Sylvia offers warm, dedicated support with a focus on growth and development, and encourages everyone around her to fulfill their potential.
· Renee Bueckert
- EPBC Employment Specialist and Life Skills Consultant
Renee is a Registered Rehabilitation Professional (RRP) with over 11 years experience assisting people with disabilities achieve their personal and occupational goals. Renee has a Bachelor Degree in Education from the University of Alberta.  She has a diverse background in business and marketing.  Renee supports her clients in job search techniques that lead to their success. 
101 - 155 Skinner Street - CLICK FOR MAP
250-714-0085
WorkBC Employment Services Centres
The VIVRS Specialized Employment and Life Skills Consultant at this location is:
· Stephanie Dancevic
- EPBC Specialized Employment and Life Skills Consultant
Stephanie is a Certified Career Practitioner with particular strengths in assisting clients to reach their employment goals.  With over 20 years experience working in the Social Services field, Stephanie brings many skills and abilities in working with clients from a variety of backgrounds who have significant life challenges.  Stephanie brings a positive and supportive approach to her work at VIVRS that inspires and builds confidence in others.
· Renee Bueckert
- EPBC Employment Specialist and Life Skills Consultant
Renee is a Registered Rehabilitation Professional (RRP) with over 11 years experience assisting people with disabilities achieve their personal and occupational goals. Renee has a Bachelor Degree in Education from the University of Alberta.  She has a diverse background in business and marketing.  Renee supports her clients in job search techniques that lead to their success. 
The Employment Program of BC is funded by the Ministry of Social Development and Employment and Labour Market Services BC
... Their program has assisted many clients in preparing for employment and integrating them back into a realistic program stream...
- P. Yochim, Team Coordinator, Parksville Mental Health and Addictions Services
Success Story
Brandon came to his first appointment in CAP in an extremely agitated state. He was devastated, angry and frightened because he and the mother of his children had just had another of many violent altercations. The first task completed with Brandon in CAP was helping him learn how to calm himself. Throughout the next six months, Brandon worked hard to change his behaviour so that he could maintain a positive relationship with his children and make changes in his life.

He dealt with addiction issues and emotional turmoil while staying with friends and sleeping on the couch.

VIVRS helped Brandon to educate himself about his legal rights, and encouraged him to see his doctor more frequently. VIVRS connected Brandon with the Homeless Outreach Worker, allowing him to search for a home for himself and his children. Brandon wanted to complete the paperwork for his Red Seal Certificate and VIVRS assisted him to find and organize documents, have them notarized and finally submit them.

Midway through the program, Brandon decided to go to addictions treatment for 3 months. VIVRS maintained contact with him; Brandon successfully completed the treatment program. Upon his return, Brandon immediately connected with VIVRS and continued to work hard in CAP. He found a place to live and began attending programs through the Men’s Resource Centre as well as Mental Health and Addictions Services.

While Brandon has been in CAP he has expressed a number of times how grateful he is for the program. He would often arrive for an appointment in an agitated state, but leave calm and smiling. At first, the VIVRS worker was the only person who would help him to calm down, but now Brandon has a support network that he can turn to for help whenever life becomes overwhelming. He continues to work hard at being a good father to his children and returning to the work force.