Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Human Resources and Social Development Canada

December 17, 2008 10:30 ET

Government of Canada Helps Improve Skills and Employment Opportunities for Canadians with Disabilities in Winnipeg

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - Dec. 17, 2008) - Thirty-six Canadians with disabilities in Winnipeg will be better prepared to find meaningful employment or become self-employed through two new projects. The Honourable Vic Toews, President of the Treasury Board and Member of Parliament for Provencher, made the announcement on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, today at the office of Work and Social Opportunities Inc. (WASO).

"Canada's economy will only remain as strong as its workers and families. Our government is committed to strengthening Canada's work force today and in the future," said Minister Toews. "That is why I am pleased to announce our investment in two projects that will help Canadians with disabilities obtain meaningful employment. These projects will also help local employers facing labour shortages, which will be good for the local economy."

Under the first project, WASO will help at least 22 individuals with intellectual or learning disabilities prepare for employment. Participants will be provided with a Job Developer who assists with resume creation and job matching. A Job Coach will then provide follow-up service once an individual has accepted an employment position.

Under the second project, delivered by Hope Centre Inc., 14 individuals with developmental disabilities will be provided with life skills training and have access to work experience opportunities. Workshops on topics such as interview skills and job preparation will be provided to increase participants' employability.

"Through the support of funders such as the Government of Canada, WASO has been able to provide quality programming to individuals requiring support in locating and maintaining competitive employment," said Ms. Kim McIntyre-Leighton, Chief Executive Officer of WASO. "We have been happy to see the people we support working in the field of their choice, with supportive employers."

"The option to access this funding from the Government of Canada for individuals who typically do not meet the criteria of other funding sources will be an invaluable experience for our job seekers and the business community," said Ms. Dana Hope, Director of Day Services for Hope Centre Inc. "Through this funding initiative, we will see employment dreams become a reality for individuals with intellectual disabilities."

The Government of Canada is providing $104,923 in funding support through the Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities. The Fund supports a wide range of employment activities for unemployed people with disabilities who are not normally eligible for Employment Insurance benefits under the Employment Insurance Act.

The Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities helps Canadians with disabilities to prepare for, obtain and retain employment or self-reliance, thereby improving their economic situation. The Fund works in partnership with organizations, including those from the private sector, to support an array of activities such as increasing employability skills, providing work experience, and preparing individuals for self-employment.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Finley
    Michelle Bakos
    Press Secretary
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    Media Relations Office