The B.C. government plans to spend $4 million to train women in trades to address the growing need for skilled workers in mining, shipbuilding and the gas and liquefied natural gas industries.
The money will be spent in 2013 and 2014 under the Canada-British Columbia Labour Market Agreement to give 675 women access to mentorship, trades training programs and skills upgrading. The funding also includes financial support for childcare, transportation, tools and equipment.
The training will be offered through a number of existing programs, like Mothers to Miners program at Northern Lights College and Gateway to the Building Trades for Women at Okanagan college.
The B.C. government estimates there will be one million job openings in the next decade, created through retirement and growth in sectors such as mining and oil and gas. About 43% of those jobs will require trades and technical training. Approximately 10% of all apprentices in British Columbia are women.