New training prepares more people for construction jobs

MALE survivors of violence and abuse can access supportive training for job opportunities in the construction industry in the Fraser Valley.

“Survivors of violence and abuse need and deserve specialized supports to secure good jobs,” said Sheila Malcolmson, Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction, on Wednesday. “We’re creating safe spaces for people to gain the skills training and employment experience they need to get in-demand jobs.”

As many as 24 participants will receive 11 weeks of essential employment and technical skills training, four weeks of on-the-job experience with local employers and one week of followup support to prepare them for employment in the construction industry. In addition to the training provided, each participant will receive as many as 10 weekly sessions of one-on-one trauma counselling support.

“Education and skills training can transform people’s lives,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Post-Secondary Education and Future Skills. “This project prepares people with the right supports, education and skills training for job opportunities in the construction industry.”

The Province, through a Community and Employer Partnerships (CEP) project is providing more than $520,000 to Kinghaven Peardonville House Society to deliver skills and certification courses in its general construction training program, The Purpose Project.

“Historically, men do not identify as survivors of violence or disclose trauma and abuse,” said Laura Elout, Manager, Kinghaven Peardonville House Society. “It will show up in different ways in their life, such as a substance-use disorder, criminal justice involvement, high school incompletion, struggling at being a safe and present parent, declining physical and mental health, maintaining healthy relationships and ongoing job maintenance challenges. Men are primarily the people dying of an accidental drug poisoning in the ongoing opioid crisis because they do not want to say their trauma story out loud or ask for help. Kinghaven Peardonville House Society – The Purpose Project wants men who are suffering in silence to know that we see you, we hear you and we want to help you. You matter!”

The second cohort for this program will start May 29, 2023. Anyone interested in information about this or other CEP projects can contact their local WorkBC centre.

“I’ve gained a lot from this program,” said Burt Huizinga, former participant in The Purpose Project. “I am moving forward in life with a newfound confidence and renewed happiness from the hard work and compassion that we received from all the facilitators that held this wonderful program together.”

Andrew Mercier, Minister of State for Workforce Development, said: “We’re making training more accessible so more people can build better lives for themselves and their families. This training project prepares survivors of violence for ongoing stable job opportunities in the B.C. construction industry.”

Pam Alexis, MLA for Abbotsford-Mission, said: “When we provide training like this one, we are giving more people the opportunity to build stronger communities, find purpose and discover their incredible potential. The Purpose Project is making Abbotsford a stronger and safer community for everyone.”


Quick Facts:

  • CEP funding comes from the Canada-British Columbia Labour Market Development Agreement.
  • CEP investments are targeted at projects that support an inclusive economic recovery.
  • CEP projects support B.C. job seekers to gain training and work experience and help businesses and communities address labour market challenges.
  • Through CEP, the Province invests $15 million annually in communities throughout B.C.


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