MONTREAL -- The Quebec government on Tuesday launched its ambitious plan to hire and train 10,000 new orderlies to work in the province's long-term care facilities for seniors, which have been hit especially hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I'm asking all Quebecers from the bottom of my heart, if you're ready to mobilize your strength, your energy, your humanity, if you want to make a real difference in the lives or our elderly, please join us, we need you," Quebec Premier Francois Legault implored Quebecers as he launched the campaign in Quebec City alongside Seniors and Caregivers Minister Marguerite Blais and Education Minister Jean-Francois Roberge.

"This operation is crucial to prepare ourself for a possible second wave" of the pandemic, Legault said.

The accelerated three-month paid training session for new orderlies will kick off June 15. Anyone interested can get more information and register here.

People who successfully complete the training - which will be paid at a rate of $760 a week - will be guaranteed a full-time job as of September at a long-term care facility for seniors, known in Quebec as CHSLDs, that will pay a gross salary of $49,000 a year.

The training is only available to people who commit to working full-time at a CHSLD; no part-time positions will be offered.

About 65 per cent of the roughly 4,700 COVID-19-related deaths in Quebec during the pandemic have occurred at CHSLDs.