OTTAWA — The Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF) recently announced it has launched the National Mentor Development Program for Women in the Skilled Trades to offer online programming to develop and enhance mentorship skills for women and gender diverse individuals in the trades.
The online, four-month program will be presented by experts in collaboration with tradeswomen coaches from the manufacturing and construction sectors.
The program will be offered free of charge to participants from across Canada.
Tradeswomen identified the need for a program of this type stated a release.
At its inaugural Supporting Women in Trades Conference in 2018 and its subsequent conferences in 2019 and 2022, CAF consulted with over 300 tradeswomen. As outlined in the Road Map to Supporting Women in the Trades, tradeswomen identified mentorship as one of their top priorities.
Specifically, they recommended, “establish and maintain mentoring programs for women in the trades where experienced tradeswomen mentor and guide those just starting out.”
Research has shown the rate of program completion is significantly higher for male apprentices in most of the Red Seal trades, with heavy duty equipment technician reporting the largest gender gap (29 per cent) followed by industrial mechanic (millwright) (27 per cent) and plumber (26 per cent). According to the National Apprenticeship Survey, women are more likely than men to identify discrimination as the reason why they left an employer.
The program was created through consultations with CAF partners the Office to Advance Women Apprentices and Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium.
Those who are interested in applying to be a participant or a coach can apply at: leadership.caf-fca.org.