Reducing barriers to job success and ensuring more First Nations members can access the skills training they need to acquire sustainable employment are the goals of a training project underway with the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation and McLeod Lake Indian Band.
The North Central LNG Strategies Program is focused on getting up to 94 Indigenous people from these two communities employment-ready for the direct and indirect jobs associated with development of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector and labour-market demand in northern British Columbia.
The project will run for approximately 52 weeks in Prince George and on the Shelly Reserve of the Lheidli T'enneh. The project is being administered by the Prince George Nechako Aboriginal Employment and Training Association (PGNAETA).
- a culturally based job-readiness program that supports personal well-being and career success;
- a certificate bootcamp to enable community members to acquire safety certifications required by employers;
- driver’s licence training;
- workplace literacy and academic upgrading; and
- services that connect participants with potential employers.
Provincial funding of $420,000 is provided through the Aboriginal Skills Training Development Fund, which is investing up to $30 million over three years for new Aboriginal skills-training projects and partnerships.
Offering community-driven skills training is one part of the Province’s efforts to include First Nations communities and Indigenous people in new LNG-sector opportunities. The Province is also working with First Nations communities on environmental stewardship priorities and financial benefits agreements.
John Rustad, Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation and MLA for Nechako Lakes –
“Programs like this reduce barriers to skills training and employment opportunities for Aboriginal people and help move us closer to the goal of shared prosperity. These programs are strengthened by the fact they are designed with the First Nations communities and delivered close to home.”
Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour and MLA for Prince George-Valemount –
“Increasing Aboriginal participation in skills training is critical to the future success of British Columbia. Aboriginal youth are the fastest-growing demographic in our province with half under the age of 25. Programs like these will provide Aboriginal people with the skills and work experience necessary to find their fit in our diverse, strong and growing economy.”
Mike Morris, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General and MLA for Prince George-Mackenzie –
“This project will provide members of the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation and Mcleod Lake Indian Band with the kind of job-related, transferable skills that support career success and will benefit both themselves and their communities.”
Chief Dominic Frederick, Lheidli T’enneh First Nation –
“Lheidli T’enneh would like to thank both McLeod Lake Indian Band and PGNAETA for partnering with the North Central LNG Strategies Project. We are in year 2, and have seen favourable results of building community member’s capacity – it’s about investing in our people for current and future job opportunities.”
Chief Derek Orr, McLeod Lake Indian Band –
“This training project and our partnership with the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation and PGNAETA will help our members access direct and indirect LNG job opportunities within our traditional territory. It provides new pathways to employment that will benefit our entire community.”
- Aboriginal people are a priority in B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint.
- A key target of the Skills for Jobs Blueprint is to increase Aboriginal workforce participation by 15,000 new Aboriginal workers by 2024.
- During the past year, more than 1,200 First Nations members have received training through programs supported by the Aboriginal Skills Training Development Fund. Another 1,000 will be trained in 2016-17.
- The Prince George Nechako Aboriginal Employment and Training Association (PGNAETA) was incorporated under the British Columbia Society Act in 1993 to administer and deliver Employment Training initiatives for Aboriginal people within the Prince George Nechako area.
Lheidli T’enneh First Nation: http://www.lheidli.ca/
McLeod Lake Indian Band: http://www.mlib.ca/
B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint: www.workbc.ca/skills
The BC Jobs Plan: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/bcjobsplan/
Prince George Nechako Aboriginal Employment and Training Association: http://pgnaeta.bc.ca/