Aboriginal Women in Mining (AWIM) is funded by HRSDC under the SPF program. It was created for Indigenous women to secure employment in mining and other non-traditional jobs. It is designed to support industry and community partners in generating employment and retention practices that support the equal participation of Indigenous women in economic development and employment opportunities. It is also designed to offer personal development, technical training and on-the-job placements that lead to long-term employment for First Nations and Métis women in non-traditional industries.

The project serves to extend the best practice training and employment platform developed by Ann Batisse and her team of Essential Skills Facilitators through delivery of both the Matachewan Aboriginal Access to jobs and Training Strategy (MAATS) and AWIM programs to other industries and across Northeastern Ontario. It is intended to reduce or eliminate potential biases held by non-traditional industries, Aboriginal communities and Aboriginal women that prevent Aboriginal women from pursuing economic opportunities within those industries. The project promotes careers and self-employment opportunities in the non-traditional industries, gives participants the required knowledge and skills to access those options and screens candidates for jobs with partner sites. The project will also work with partner companies to assist them in creating a safe and comfortable work environment for Aboriginal women and in understanding and addressing gender barriers that may exist that could affect their retention. The project provides assistance to industry partners and communities in developing collaborative, formalized relationships.

women in mining posing in front of large vehicle
Detour Underground Tour

From February 2013 when the Aboriginal Women in Mining program (AWIM) was established to today the Temiskaming Native Women’s Support group far exceeded all of its targets. As of March 31, 2020, the AWIM program served 478 Indigenous women from across Northeastern Ontario and of those, 364 women gained employment. Under the current SPF agreement slated to end March 31, 2021, AWIM has already exceeded its outreach target of 189 Indigenous women, providing training and employment opportunities to 196 program participants. Of those, 98 secured employment leaving us 32 participants short in reaching our target of 130 women by the end of the next fiscal year.

AWIM was established to support the economic independence of First Nations and Métis women living in Northeastern Ontario. This program engages First Nations and Métis women in exploring non-traditional jobs within mining-related industries. It is designed to reduce systemic challenges and offers individualized assessments and targeted support that address barriers to employment. The program involves both classroom and practical skills training with job placements at partner mines. If this program would benefit you or someone you know, contact us.

For business and organizations contact:

Kathy Lajeunesse
Program Practitioner k.lajeunesse@keepersofthecircle.com

For project proposals or service providers contact:

Bertha Cormier
Program Director

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Aboriginal Women in Mining


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