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Ontario Investing in Skills Training for Indigenous People in the Thunder Bay Area

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Ontario Investing in Skills Training for Indigenous People in the Thunder Bay Area

Province Helping Develop Skills Needed for Careers in Construction

Ministry of Indigenous Affairs

Ontario is investing in construction training for Indigenous people in the Thunder Bay area, helping them develop valuable job skills and furthering their education.

The province is supporting the Construction Craft Worker Training Program delivered by Anishinabek Employment & Training Services (AETS). This program provides pre-apprenticeship training for Indigenous participants from nine First Nation communities in the Thunder Bay area. It  helps graduates become registered apprentices, get jobs in construction or further their education with valuable post-secondary training, while also providing courses focused on life skills and resume-building.

Supporting economic development for Indigenous communities is one of many steps on Ontario's journey of reconciliation with Indigenous people. It reflects Ontario's commitment to work with Indigenous partners, creating a better future for everyone in the province.

Investing in skills training is part of our plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives. 

Quick Facts

  • Ontario is providing $250,000 through the Aboriginal Economic Development Fund (AEDF) to Anishinabek Employment & Training Services (AETS) to support the Construction Craft Worker Program. This is the second year that the AETS has received funding through the AEDF to support this program.
  • AETS is currently delivering the third intake of the Construction Craft Worker Program. The program is 22 weeks long and each intake provides training for 20 of students.
  • Ontario is investing a total of $95 million through the AEDF over ten years. The AEDF was launched in 2014 and has three funding streams: Regional Partnership Grants, Economic Diversification Grants and the Business and Community Fund. To date, Ontario has funded 57 projects with Indigenous partners through the fund.

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“I am excited to announce that this new investment will directly help more Indigenous people succeed in the workplace. Organizations like Anishinabek Employment and Training Services play a crucial role in making sure that their participants access training and services that benefit so many in Ontario.”

David Zimmer

Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation

“Today’s announcement supporting the Anishinabek Employment and Training Services will go a long way to help create jobs and grow the local economy for local First Nation communities. By investing in the Construction Craft Worker Training Program, our government is helping program graduates find meaningful employment, post-secondary education opportunities, and apprenticeships that will serve them well into the future.”

Michael Gravelle

Minister of Northern Development and Mines, MPP Thunder Bay-Superior North

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to offer this program to the citizens of our nine communities. It enables Anishinabek Employment and Training Services to fulfill our vision of leading in the development of a skilled Aboriginal workforce by providing meaningful and comprehensive training opportunities that lead directly to exceptional employment opportunities with our industry partners.”

Angie Lynch

Project Coordinator, Anishinabek Employment & Training Services

“I feel that completing the Level 1 Construction Craft Worker Program through AETS helped a lot. Along with the great direction and support from the staff responsible for the program and the new friendships with the other trainees, this was a very rewarding and positive experience.”

Sage Thompson

Construction Craft Worker Training Program Graduate

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