Partnerships have been a cornerstone of PTP’s work for more than 20 years. A recent example is PTP’s collaborative efforts in the Construction Trades Program, an initiative spearheaded by ACCES Employment and Laborers’ International Union of North America (LiUNA! Local 506 Training Centre) to help Syrian refugees find employment in the construction sector. PTP’s extensive experience in collaborative projects, program design, and Workforce Essential Skills development for literacy learners made us the right partner for this initiative.


Spotting Barriers

Many Syrian refugees have experience and interest in pursuing careers in the construction trades, an industry where there is currently a strong demand for skilled workers. Yet many of these newcomers need help to build their job search skills, improve their English language and/or literacy, obtain specialized education or other training, establish professional networks, or simply learn about the Canadian construction industry. Meeting the needs of these job seekers therefore requires a multi-pronged approach with collaboration across a number of partner organizations. No one organization has the capacity or expertise to address all potential components of this program.

Seeking Solutions

Delivered by partners with diverse expertise, the Construction Trades Program is a collaborative initiative that provides employment counselling and job placement; sector-specific language training to address construction-specific vocabulary; Skills for Workplace Success training; wrap-around settlement and mental wellness services; and pre-apprenticeship training where participants obtain seven essential certificates needed to work on any construction site.

ACCES Employment and LiUNA led the program, which was developed in partnership with PTP Adult Learning & Employment Programs, Catholic Crosscultural Services (CCS), the Ontario Masonry Training Centre (OMTC), and the Refugee Career Jumpstart Project (RCJP).

PTP’s role was to develop tailored curriculum for the Skills for Workplace Success component as well provide in-class instruction. The instructor, who has worked with PTP in the past to develop customized curricula, is a seasoned English as a Second Language instructor with experience in literacy and essential skills training.

Seeing Impact

Since the start of the Construction Trades Program in January 2017, over 90 participants have accessed one or more training components, 67 have completed the program, and of those, 41 graduates are currently employed in construction related jobs.

For PTP, working on this project with ACCES has provided an opportunity to strengthen our network alliance and may pave the way for joint funding and further program partnership work in the future.


!Over the past 25 years, PTP has worked in partnership with Colleges, School Boards, Not for Profit and Community Based Organizations, Friendship Centres, Employment Service Providers, Governments, Private Career Colleges and Employers.

! In the past 5 years we’ve partnered with 21 organizations.