Vancouver Island Vocational and Rehabilitation Services (VIVRS) has been operating on Vancouver Island since 1993.  We are a dynamic agency, passionate about delivering professional and creative employment services to individuals.  Most of our services are one to one, and tailored to meet the specific needs of the individuals we are serving.

Currently VIVRS is delivering WORKBC services in Nanaimo and Courtenay.  We specialize in delivering specific portions of WorkBC services to job seekers with barriers to employment.  Our staff have specialized skills and training, and as an agency we are passionate about supporting individuals with diverse abilities to achieve their work-related goals.  Our team is a multi disciplinary group of talented individuals with extensive academic qualifications holding designations such as Vocational Rehabilitation Consultants, Registered Rehabilitation Professionals (RRP), Career Development Practitioners, Master’s level Adult Educators, Mental Health Workers, Vocational Assessors, Employment Specialists, Job Coaches, Child and Youth Care Professionals, Counselors, Life Skills Coaches, Community Support Workers, Communications Professionals and Job Developers

V.I.V.R.S. Logo with tagline "Discover your abilities"
Image of four hands putting four puzzle pieces together.

Customized Employment

VIVRS proudly delivers Customized Employment (CE) Services through in Nanaimo and Courtenay.  Customized Employment is an innovative approach used to support job seekers who may have limited workplace experience.  Customized Employment is a two-part approach that is focussed on one to one activity, and leads to job placement in an area that the job seeker has demonstrated skills and interests.

CE Framework

Customized Employment begins with the Discovery Assessment– This is a community-based assessment process that involves participation in activities and work experience placements in order to develop a profile of skills, passions, and talents.  Job Seekers and Customized Employment Coordinator participate in a variety of activities (familiar and unfamiliar to the job seeker).  CE Coordinator observe the job seeker and take note of skills and interests that can be transferable to the workplace.  Using this information, the job seeker and CE Coordinator identify employment related themes and opportunities that would be a match.

At the close of Discovery, we offer Job Placement Services– The CE Coordinator will use the themes identified in Discovery and create connections to employers who will benefit from the skills and talents the job seeker offers.  We focus on connecting individuals to real work, for real pay.  In CE we create/carve/or restructure jobs to better meet the employers needs, and to utilize the strength and the skills of the individual job seeker.  To support the success of the job seeker we also provide on the job assistance, and job sustainment support (including 52 weeks of follow up support).

At VIVRS we are passionate about our CE services.  We have worked with many individuals who have been unable to articulate their skills and strengths and struggled to find and maintain employment that was suitable.  CE services assists individuals who have barriers find their best and most marketable talents and supports them with a creative approach to connecting with employers.

VIVRS has been offering CE services since 2008 in a variety of our programs and service delivery locations.  We have successfully placed several hundred individuals through our CE services in a variety of different industries including; healthcare, social services, hospitality, education, retail, industrial work, construction, and many other exciting sectors.

CE Services are geared towards individuals who may identify in one or more of the following ways;

  • Identify as struggling to find and maintain employment
  • Identify as needing additional support to learn their work
  • Have never worked or have been out of the workforce for an extended period
  • Have a diverse ability or employment related barrier that makes it difficult to connect with employers
  • Struggle to articulate skill set, and are unsure of employment related goal

If you feel like you may benefit from CE check in with us at the local WorkBC office in Nanaimo, and Courtenay.

To learn more about CE services listen to our staff in the following webinars;

Our knowledge of the communities in which we work and our solid relationships with employers and community service providers give our clients a head start in their efforts to enhance their self worth and contribute to society.

Success Stories

 " Leanne was referred to VIVRS through Canada Pension Plan Disability Vocational Rehabilitation Services. She had been told by her doctors that she..."


What we Do

image of a man holding a plant working at a garden center

VIVRS has a proven track record in providing:

  •  Employment and vocational counselling
  • Connection and support for community employers
  • Case management
  • Assessment
  • Liaison with medical specialists
  • Development of employment and training plans
  • Customized employment for persons with diverse abilities
  • Resumé development
  • Job search assistance
  • Life skills coaching
  • Application for training and educational funding
  • Developing cost-sharing agreements between funders
  • Ongoing coaching to support employment success
  • Referral to specialized assessments and assistance with debrief and interpretation
  • Connection to employers and ongoing support for job seeker and employer

For job seekers, we focus on exploration of your goals to prepare you for employment, training, volunteering and improved quality of life. We provide ongoing support that is tailored to your specific needs.

For employers, we focus on supporting you as you search for, train, and hire the workers you need. We provide you with skilled, motivated workers for short- or long-term opportunities ranging from volunteer work placements to paid employment.

Successful Collaboration

On Vancouver Island, hundreds of employers have collaborated with us to build their businesses by hosting and hiring VIVRS supported job seekers. Employers comment on the skill and enthusiasm these job seekers bring to the workplace as well as the professional support available from VIVRS’ staff. VIVRS job seekers not only contribute to the productivity of companies where they work, but also to the community reputation and morale within these businesses.

Job seekers report an increase in confidence and self-esteem, and a feeling that they can make a genuine contribution.

For over 25 years, VIVRS has grown from one dedicated professional serving the Nanaimo Regional District to a multi-disciplinary team working in various locations across Vancouver Island.  VIVRS has provided services across Vancouver Island from Victoria and Port Hardy.  We have delivered services for a variety of funders including ICBC, CCDP, WorkSafe, and Provincial and Federal government contracts.

Community Networks

Through our 25 years of service VIVRS has developed successful working relationships with key organizations in the community in order to better support job seekers and employers. 

Click below to find links to some of these organizations.

Work BC Provincial Government Logo with link to Workbc website
BC Government Logo with link to BC government homepage
Vancouver Island Vocational and Rehabilitation Services Ltd. (VIVRS) Logo
Funding provided by the Government of Canada through the Canada-British Columbia Workforce agreement