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Trade Winds to Success. A Proven Aboriginal Recruitment & Pre-Apprenticeship Program. Trade Winds Track Record. Since 2005 . . . 38 program intakes 572 students graduated 94\% of students employed. Our Partners. What we do.

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trade winds to success

Trade Winds to Success

A Proven Aboriginal Recruitment

& Pre-Apprenticeship Program

trade winds track record
Trade Winds Track Record

Since 2005 . . .

  • 38 program intakes
  • 572 students graduated
  • 94% of students employed
what we do
What we do

Recruit, prepare, and place Aboriginal people into apprenticeship positions with Alberta companies

trade winds to success1
Trade Winds to Success
  • Our advantage…
  • Aboriginal staffed program for Aboriginal Learners creates a sense of belonging and trust. Helps make people feel welcome and at home
  • Staff….caring matters!
  • Learners can feel authenticity
  • Sensitive to the challenges and backgrounds of our people
  • Cultural teachings, Elders and Sweatlodge availability, access to smudging rituals
  • Understanding the humour
  • What we have learned…
  • Visualization really works!
  • Giving people an opportunity can pay off, especially more than one chance
  • Having Cultural resources available is super useful!
  • Aboriginal People are online and email savvy, (Facebook is our friend)
  • Back up plans are essential, ie babysitters, transportation, relapse, housing
  • Knowing available community resources goes a long way in preventing crisis
trade winds to success2
Trade Winds to Success
  • Best practices…
  • Where are you from? How many brothers and sisters do you have? Share your information with them. It’s the start of relationship building.
  • TOWES Testing has helped to determine literacy levels and improved outcomes
  • Clearly defined expectations of the program for the students.
  • Help learners to create a vision, (10 year plan)
  • Team building exercises at the start of the program
  • Former students coming in to speak with new students and act as mentors.
  • Highly visible access to Success Stories
  • Level 4 Provincial pre-apprenticeship test successfully passed (95% passing rate)
  • Mostly word of mouth advertising with a solid reputation for helping people
  • Advertising through public transit
  • Staying active in our community, ie. Ceremonies, Powwows, Round Dances, feasts, inter –agency meetings
  • AA is a great place to recruit clients
The Aboriginal population is the fastest growing in Canada, nearly 50 percent of which is below the age of 25. This represents a significant pool of largely untapped labour. To maximize this resource, relevant stakeholders (industry, governments, Aboriginal leaders, community leaders, educators and trainers) at the regional level need to accommodate cultural differences and identify training needs.

Meeting Construction and Maintenance Workforce Challenges: Construction Owners Strategy 2011 to 2016 - COAA of ALBERTA

aboriginal social realities
Aboriginal Social Realities
  • Unemployment: in 2006 the overall unemployment rate in Alberta was 4.3%. In the Aboriginal population it was 11%. Throughout Canada this total was 6.6% and 14.8% for Aboriginals.
  • Children in care: As of 2009 in Alberta Aboriginal children made up approx. 9% of all children, yet they comprised 62% of all children in care.
  • Educational outcomes: In AB. 56.1% of Aboriginals over 15 years have completed high school as opposed to 70.3% of Non Aboriginals. Nationally only 41% of on reserve Aboriginals have completed high school
  • Justice: Every kid you get to grade 12 saves society – and – you – $26,000 in crime related costs. Approximately 70% of AB prisoners are high school drop outs. It’s been estimated that career criminals cost taxpayers between 1.7-2.3 million throughout theirs lives to house in jail. In 2006 Aboriginals 20 or over comprised 35% of people in jail in AB. despite being only approximately 4.8% of the population. In Saskatchewan Aboriginals incarcerated was 78.4% and they made up approximately 12.2 % of the population.
common themes
Common Themes
  • Aboriginal workers have a lack of qualifications, skills, education and work experience
  • Difficulties contacting potential Aboriginal workers and worker reluctance to move away from home communities
  • Differences in expectations between workers and employers
  • Some Aboriginal workers may also be reluctant to look for work in companies or industries that are perceived as having bad reputations in communities or with current conflicting relationships with Aboriginal communities
  • Language or cultural issues
ideas for change
Ideas for change
  • Fund opportunities for ASET agreement holders to gather and share ideas and best practices to improve employment training and outcomes
  • When a program is identified as working well with Aboriginals help them with job placement or funding. ie Trade Winds to Success!
  • Empower First Nations communities / organizations by asking them what help they need to develop their own capacities for their people
  • Implement training to employment programs based on essential skills to meet your companies labor requirements
  • Create and utilize a work readiness training in the FNMI communities prior to hiring, to explore the employer expectations, opportunities, work environments and camp life
  • Do as much training as possible within their own communities prior to work commencement
  • Start a person in one area and if they don’t work out, try them out in another area prior to any dismissal
  • Cross cultural awareness training for managers, foreman, supervisors and lead hands
  • Provide FNMI employees with an overall scope of project picture from beginning to end
ideas for change1
Ideas for change
  • Have Cultural supports and mentors in place at the work site by hiring people from their home communities or Skype access
  • Do your hiring policies help or hinder Aboriginals to gain employment
  • Do an 80/ 20 split of paid time between work and upgrading or further job specific training for FNMI in onsite training trailers. May build better buy in for retention as well as great PR in the employees home community
  • Show FNMI people what opportunities for advancement exist within the company
  • Utilize social media to tell your company’s story. Do Vlogging about current FNMI success stories
  • Help young people create a picture in their minds that work life and educational opportunities are a real possibility.
  • Leverage technology for learning in communities to improve educational outcomes, ie Khan Academy ( online learning )
  • Utilization of personal life coaches to create a vision and help people uncover their strengths talents and abilities

Trade Winds to Success

Memorandum of Understanding for First Nation Education in Alberta

Insight West Research – “The Future Starts Now” - Economic Space for First Nations, Report

Nation Talk

Paul Martin’s Promising Practices in Education

The Circle – On Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples’ in Canada