By the time the Regional Visitor Gateway project wraps up in September 2015, six more people will have work experience by turning Nelson’s historic CPR railway station into a state-of-the-art tourist centre and headquarters for the Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce, thanks to $176,000 in government Job Creation Partnership funding.
These workers are getting experience in construction, carpentry and heritage restoration techniques on the structure, built in 1900, as well as safety orientation over the course of one year.
The Nelson Gateway project, overall, has received more than $364,000 in funding and trained 10 other workers in two earlier stages of the project: more than $54,000 for the first stage and approximately $134,000 in the second stage.
Job Creation Partnerships are part of the Employment Program of BC’s Community and Employer Partnerships, which fund projects that increase employability and share labour market information.
To date, more than 450 job seekers have benefited from work experience and more than 120 projects have been funded throughout the province.
The Community and Employer Partnerships program is featured in BC’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint that helps align training and education with in-demand jobs and provides more support to people who are struggling to gain a foothold in the job market or who face unique challenges.
“For this project, the program is doing exactly what it’s supposed to be doing – getting workers experience and getting them back into the workforce. We are extremely fortunate to have the support of the ministry and, equally importantly, the Job Creation Partnership participants who have contributed so much to the project,” said Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce executive director Tom Thomson.
Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation Don McRae agreed adding that the “Nelson Regional Gateway is a high-profile project in the Kootenays and the workers there are getting great construction experience on a heritage building that will look terrific on their resumes when they’re finished.”