Government announces $1 million in funding for Indigenous training program
Trade Winds offers 14- to 16-week pre-apprenticeship training for Indigenous students for almost every trade
The federal government plans to spend more than $1 million on a program designed to help get Indigenous young people into the trades.
Announcing the funding increase on Monday, Randy Boissonnault, the Liberal MP for Edmonton Centre, said the funding will triple the number of spots offered to the young people.
"Right now, the program has the capacity for around 135," said Boissonnault. "And with this funding, and the additional partners, it will be well over 400 students."
The money will also allow the program to renovate training spaces, launch new marketing plans and a create new outreach business model for Bonnyville, he said.
Leanne Froese, the program manager for Calgary Trade Winds, said the program gives Indigenous students "a chance that they might not get otherwise."
"I've seen some students that are coming straight off the reserves and don't have the skills to get right into an apprenticeship," said Froese.
The program helps prepare people for apprenticeships as boilermakers, carpenters, electricians, ironworkers, millwrights, plumbers, pipefitters, welders and insulators.
Navdeep Bains, the minister of innovation, science, and economic development, said he believes Indigenous people are an important part of Canada's economic prosperity.
"The Trade Winds to Success Training Society's expanded pre-apprenticeship program will ensure more Indigenous adult learners have access to the skills and knowledge required to secure a career of choice in the construction trades," Bains said in a press release
The Edmonton office for the program was awarded the 2013 Senator Thelma Chalifoux Award for its commitment to Aboriginal student success.