Toronto Star Article

Chloé Fedio STAFF REPORTER Prime Minister Stephen Harper made his way to Toronto on Thursday to announce a $20 million boost for an educational program for disadvantaged youth.

In his second trip to the city in two weeks, the Prime Minister stuck to a simple message — his government’s priority is bolstering the economy — and insisted his visit wasn’t meant to gain Conservative support in the GTA.

Harper announced the funding for Pathways to Education Canada, a Toronto-based charity that tutors inner-city youth, to increase students’ chances of going to post-secondary school.

“In an underprivileged neighbourhood, a university or college campus can appear to be a long way off — even when the actual buildings are only a few blocks away,” Harper said. The money was set aside in the 2010 budget, and will be dolled out over four years. The volunteer-run program was founded 10 years ago in Regent Park, and now operates in four provinces to support 3,400 students.

The Prime Minister also made a stop in Chinatown on Feb. 17 to promote his government’s new legislation to protect those who make citizens’ arrests.