New program designed to help job-seekers transition into construction industry

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Ontario Construction News staff writer

Ontario will spend $768,000 to help people find construction jobs in Brantford.

The SkillsAdvance Ontario project “Construct Your Career” will help 60 unemployed job seekers gain the skills and work experience sought by construction employers in the Brantford region.

St. Leonard’s Community Services is leading this innovative skills training initiative in close cooperation with local employers to help overcome labour shortages. Construct Your Career will prepare participants for entry level roles and help them transition to paid employment in the construction sector.

“As we reopen our economy, training and retraining are essential for the recovery of our province,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development.

“More businesses need skilled workers, and our government is helping employers train local workers and job seekers through innovative training projects.”

Statistics Canada reports that Ontario’s construction sector added 34,100 jobs in June. There are currently around 50 active SkillsAdvance Ontario projects across Ontario, dedicated to sector-specific training for jobs in manufacturing, logistics, forestry, tourism and hospitality, steel and aluminum, and other sectors.

St. Leonard’s Community Services hosted an event last Wednesday to help promote the project and recruit participants. Also, a community tool drive will collect tool donations, as workers need their own basic tool set and expensive tools can be a barrier for many potential trainees.

The program launches August 31 and will include technical skills training, soft skills training to succeed in the new work environment and employment services to help trainees find a work placement and ultimately a job.

“We are excited to deliver the Construct Your Career program,” said Malcolm Whyte, Director of Employment Services at St. Leonard’s Community Services. “It will provide local job seekers with the skills required to start a career in the construction sector and support our local employers in identifying skilled labour to fill key employment roles within their businesses. The construction sector is an important part of our local economy and provides high quality employment opportunities, this program will ensure we are giving job seekers the skills required to succeed.”

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