Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

December 04, 2009 11:00 ET

Government of Canada Helps Adults in B.C. Improve Their Literacy and Essential Skills

VICTORIA, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Dec. 4, 2009) - Adults in British Columbia will benefit from two federally funded projects that will help them improve their literacy and essential skills so they can get jobs. The Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of State (Sport) and Member of Parliament for Saanich-Gulf Islands, made the announcement today on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development.

"Our government is working with partners across the country to ensure Canadians are equipped with the literacy and essential skills they need to take part in tomorrow's workforce and build better futures for themselves and their families," said Minister of State Lunn. "Improving the skills of Canadians is an important part of the Government of Canada's commitment to build a highly skilled, adaptable and competitive workforce."

The Association of Service Providers for Employability and Career Training will receive $693,824 for its Essential Skills Online project. This project will help trainers across the province integrate four essential skills (thinking skills, oral communication, working with others, and continuous learning) into employment training programs. The Association will work in partnership with the Vancouver Island University's Centre for Continuing Studies to develop an online literacy and essential skills training tool that is based on an existing product, Your Money Matters. The new tool will benefit thousands of trainees and adult learners and will be shared with other regions of Canada.

Project Literacy Victoria will receive $680,878 to adapt learning materials to make them relevant to the socio-cultural context of adult First Nations people. To maximize the use of these learning tools, they will be shared with other partners and stakeholders involved in training First Nations adult learners, as well as training practitioners.

Literacy and essential skills play a key role in ensuring that Canadians can fully participate and succeed in the workforce. The Government of Canada's Office of Literacy and Essential Skills works with partners such as provincial and territorial governments, employers and community organizations to provide Canadians with the tools and supports they need to maximize opportunities for themselves, their families and their communities.

In January, the Government of Canada underscored its commitment to help Canadians improve their literacy and essentials skills when it introduced Canada's Economic Action Plan, which contains measures to stimulate the economy, create jobs and protect Canadians during the global recession.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.



BACKGROUNDER

While education and training fall under provincial and territorial jurisdiction, all governments share the goal of ensuring that Canadians of all ages have the literacy and essential skills required to work and continue learning.

Literacy and essential skills are a continuum of skills that are needed for learning, work and life. All Canadians use these skills at different levels of complexity. The nine essential skills are: reading text, document use, numeracy, writing, thinking/problem solving, oral communication, working with others, computer use and continuous learning.

The Government of Canada created the Office of Literacy and Essential Skills with a mission to become an acknowledged centre of expertise on what works in increasing the literacy and essential skills of adult Canadians.

While Canada currently faces economic uncertainty, skills shortages remain a significant challenge. With a budget of $36 million in 2009-2010, the Office's activities focus on increasing knowledge on effective approaches to improving the literacy and essential skills of adults for participation in the workplace, the community and family life.

The Government also introduced Canada's Economic Action Plan, which includes measures to stimulate the economy, create jobs and protect Canadians during the global recession. A key component of the Plan is to create more and better opportunities for Canadians through skills development.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Finley
    Michelle Bakos
    Press Secretary
    819-994-2482
    or
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    Media Relations Office
    819-994-5559