Canadian Apprenticeship Forum to continue operations
By Anthony Capkun
October 29, 2012 – The Canadian Apprenticeship Forum’s (CAF-FCA) board announced it intends to continue operations beyond March 31, 2013, when operational funding through the federal Sector Council Program ends.
“Our June 2012 conference in Regina was a great opportunity to connect with the apprenticeship community and identify champions for continuing our work,” said Dave Suess, CAF-FCA’s chair and apprenticeship learning advisor at Suncor Energy. “Since then, our membership list has expanded, showing that stakeholders are willing to make a financial contribution to keep CAF-FCA doing the work we value.”
Following news the Sector Council Program was being wound down in July 2011, CAF-FCA says it took steps to assess support among the apprenticeship community to continue operations. Feedback indicated that skills shortages across Canada warrant a renewed mandate to promote careers in the skilled trades, conduct research to inform apprenticeship stakeholders, and facilitate connections across trades—across sectors and across Canada.
Over the next year, CAF-FCA will continue to engage members, pursue project funding to continue its research and promotion activities, and streamline its governance structure. Members will help establish a new strategic plan and priorities, as well as identify a new board, which is being reduced to 15.
“We have a busy year ahead and fully realize the challenges involved with engaging new members, revisiting our board structure and developing initiatives of substance for apprenticeship stakeholders,” said Ray Massey, CAF-FCA director and chair of the Apprenticeship & Industry Training Board in Alberta. “CAF-FCA’s collaborative, partnership approach is paying dividends. We’re seeing apprenticeship authorities, labour groups, employers, educational institutions, associations, equity groups and individual members in every region of Canada step up to support us. That will make the next year an exciting time.”
CAF-FCA is a non-profit working with the apprenticeship community in all regions of Canada; participants work collaboratively to support “vibrant and innovative apprenticeship systems and policies, with a view to developing a highly-skilled, inclusive and mobile skilled trades workforce”.