There is a projected decline in labour participation and productivity within Canada, this could be partially offset by increasing the participation rate and productivity of Aboriginal peoples in Canada. Aboriginal peoples in Canada face multiple barriers to education and employment; resulting in lower educational attainment and higher unemployment rates. Change It Up Trades (CIU) is a program designed to address these barriers and provide the support necessary for Aboriginal peoples to succeed at attaining an apprentice trade ticket. Change It Up is an eleven-month competency-based training program that uses in-community programming, alternative college entrance requirements, and a guaranteed industry apprenticeship.
Through building partnerships with communities, businesses, and educational institutions CIU is able to address barriers to employment while also ensuring that the skills gained by participants are aligned with the labour market demands within their region. The program will need to complete a community assessment, economic analysis of regions, and secure funding from government bodies as well as private corporations in order to begin implementation. Change It Up will be implemented as a social enterprise, ensuring that after the first three years of funding the business purchased by CIU will generate enough profits to cover the costs of the training program, eliminating the need for further funding. Change It Up is a cost effective way to successfully addresses barriers to education and increase employment outcomes for Aboriginal peoples in Canada.