OTTAWA – The Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF) has completed the pilot for the new National Leadership Development Program for Women in the Skilled Trades, with 14 participants successfully earning a certificate and another cohort set to begin next month.
The program was developed in partnership with the Office to Advance Women Apprentices and is available to all tradeswomen including Indigenous people, LGBTQ2S+ individuals, immigrants, people with disabilities and those from racialized groups.
The pilot program was completed in December and, due to the overwhelming success, the second cohort is scheduled to begin Feb. 13.
Participants were guided by subject matter experts to learn effective strategies and gain practical tips to empower them as leaders in their workplaces and the broader community, indicates a release, adding it focused on improving knowledge about strategies to mentor, take on leadership roles on the jobsite and within their unions, communicate, resolve conflict and speak with confidence.
One of the participants stated, “I am truly grateful for the chance to reflect on what this program has meant for me both professionally and personally. It came to me at the perfect time in my life and I am a better tradesperson for having met my cohort and our talented facilitators and studied this incredibly valuable material.
“I am so eager to show you all what I am capable of, what I can build for myself, and how I can serve others with the skills and techniques I have developed these past months.”
In addition to the program benefitting participants, it will also benefit the industry by creating empowered and qualified women leaders, CAF states.
Participants are already pursuing additional programs with two enrolled in higher education, one receiving a promotion and another who wants to organize a confidence building workshop for women in her union.
The program is offered at no cost to tradeswomen. CAF and the Office to Advance Women Apprentices are working with industry, trade unions, government and training institutions to support development and administration costs. Information to apply for the September 2023 cohort will be released in the coming months.