December 8, 2018 6:28 pm

This week on ‘Focus Montreal’: Dec. 8

Canadian weightlifter Christine Girard holds up the gold and bronze Olympic medals she was awarded during a ceremony Monday December 3, 2018 in Ottawa. Girard was awarded the London 2012 gold and Beijing 2008 bronze medals after the International Olympic Committee disqualified athletes from the 2008 and 2012 Olympic games.

Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press
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Focus Montreal introduces Montrealers to the people who are shaping our community by bringing their stories into focus.

The program airs Saturday at 5:30 p.m. as well as Sunday at 7:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and midnight.

Take a look at who we’re meeting this week.

The Transition Project

A student-run employment agency in Montreal is turning heads after two teens, both 17, set out to prove that where there is a will, there is a way.

It all began when Jackson Labell-Nevard decided to spend his summer break helping at-risk teens find jobs.

Despite much skepticism, Labell-Nevard managed to enlist 50 students to work on his project for free.

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Together, they contacted local businesses and connected with community groups like Batsahw, Sun Youth and the YWCA, who helped put the teens in touch with employers — giving rise to The Transition Project.

READ MORE: Liberals changing Canada Summer Jobs attestation after reproductive rights controversy

The not-for-profit was founded with Labell-Nevard’s co-CEO James Galbraith.

To date, the team has managed to find employment for 86 people, including refugees from around the world.

Global News senior anchor Jamie Orchard sat down with Galbraith and Labell-Nevard to find out more about how a couple of teenagers came up with such a resourceful idea.

To learn more about the organization, visit The Transition Project website.

Christine Girard’s long road to gold

She’s waited years for her day on the podium. Earlier this week, Canadian weightlifter Christine Girard was finally awarded her hard-earned medals.

In a much-anticipated ceremony, the 33-year-old received her London 2012 Olympic gold and her Beijing 2008 Olympic bronze medals last Monday.

The upgrade was made after several athletes from other countries tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs and were stripped of their medals.

READ MORE: Canadian weightlifter finally gets Olympic gold medal, 6 years after competition

The now retired athlete and mother of three becomes the first Canadian woman to medal in weightlifting.

Girard joined Orchard to share her story.

For more information on Girard’s life and career, or that of any other Canadian Olympian, visit the Team Canada Olympic website.

Building compassionate communities

The Montreal Institute for Palliative Care launched in the spring of 2018, as a branch of the West Island Palliative Care Residence.

Its mandate is to share acquired expertise across the country through innovative research aimed at improving the quality of end-of-life care.

Thanks to a generous donation, the institute recently unveiled its very first project called “Compassionate Communities.”

The five-year project will build community-based programs for citizens of all ages dealing with serious diseases or in the later stages of their lives.

Dale MacCandlish Weil, the institute’s managing director, discussed the importance of the project in a one-on-one interview with Orchard.

For a list of services and projects, visit the West Island Palliative Care Residence website.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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