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Canadian Colleges for a Resilient Recovery focuses on resilient housing and upskilling for Canadian communities

The Government of Canada-funded program provides specialized training for 204 workers in Indigenous and rural communities in four provinces.

Hamilton, Oct. 17, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Canadian Colleges for a Resilient Recovery (C2R2) announced today a new national project, Resilient Housing and Upskilling for Canada’s Communities, to support workforce development in Indigenous and rural communities across Canada. 

This C2R2 project is designed to facilitate community workforce planning for communities by bringing organizations together from across industries and sectors, identifying high-growth employment areas and finding local sources of labour to meet employer demand.

“We know that Canada’s recovery has not been equitable for everyone and this project can help to change that,” said Ron J. McKerlie, President and CEO of Mohawk College, a founding institution of C2R2. “Our industry and community partners have good, resilient jobs available and C2R2 colleges, cégeps, and polytechnics have the experience and capacity to prepare the skilled workers they need.”

“Our government is investing in economic diversification to help communities prosper,” said Randy Boissonnault, Employment, Workforce Development and Official Languages Minister. “We’re creating new opportunities for people and ensuring workers have the opportunity to build a better tomorrow.”

C2R2 institutions participating in the Resilient Housing and Upskilling for Canada’s Communities project are:  

  • British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) – Burnaby, BC
  • Cégep de Rimouski – Rimouski, QC
  • Mohawk College – Hamilton, ON
  • Okanagan College – Kelowna, BC
  • Saskatchewan Indian Institute for Technologies (SIIT) – Saskatoon, SK
  • Saskatchewan Polytechnic – Regina, SK

Collectively, these C2R2 members will work with up to 20 communities and benefit 204 workers. A community of practice has been established to share and learn from each other as the project progresses. With unique expertise and experience spanning multiple communities and provinces, this C2R2 project will enable deep collaboration.

Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) provided $3,036,000 to C2R2 institutions to execute the Resilient Housing and Upskilling for Canada’s Communities project until March 31, 2024.

Launched by ESDC, the Community Workforce Development Program (CWDP) provides an opportunity to test community-based approaches to workforce planning and skills training to support local economic development and growth. It aims to benefit 25 communities, 250 employers, and 2,500 workers.

The program will strengthen communities by supporting economic and workforce development. This includes helping Canadians develop the skills they need to adapt in a changing labour market.

Throughout the implementation of the project, C2R2 is committed to three key goals:

  1. Consulting with Indigenous communities to identify and co-develop housing opportunities and training needs.
  2. Creating resources to guide Indigenous communities through the planning and construction of their own housing solutions.
  3. Developing certification and skills training for Indigenous workers in trades related to planning and building housing.

Workers who take training offered through the CWDP will experience courses that focus heavily on sustainable building training. They will also have the opportunity to learn both online and in person, gain the hands-on experience needed for construction and sustainable building workforce occupations, and have the opportunity to connect directly with industry experts. The training available through the project is intended to be culturally relevant and will incorporate traditional knowledge and ways of knowing.  

This is the second major project to be implemented by C2R2 in 2023, following the success of Quick Train Canada, an initiative launched in February 2023 under the Government of Canada’s Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program.

About Canadian Colleges for a Resilient Recovery (C2R2)

Canadian Colleges for a Resilient Recovery (C2R2) is a coalition of 14 highly aligned colleges, cégeps, institutes, and polytechnics across Canada with an established commitment to sustainability. The coalition members have come together as a driving force, providing the skills required to transition to a clean economy in Canada. They are positioned to support workforce upskilling and bridge the skills gap across Canada. C2R2’s administration and secretariat are managed by Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario.

To contact the Canadian Colleges for a Resilient Recovery, email [email protected].

Alaa Ismail

Alaa Ismail

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