The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for FedDev Ontario, has announced an investment of over $5.8 million for Elevate to launch a new and innovative job success program, Elevate Talent.
The program promises to reskill 5,300 job seekers from underrepresented communities, including Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, 2SLGBTQ+, and Francophone professionals in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area and match them with job openings in technology and innovation-based organizations, start-ups and the creative industries.
“For too long, members of underrepresented groups have experienced unique and systemic hurdles to their career advancement. Now, after facing disproportionate impacts of the pandemic, individuals in these communities need support more than ever,” said the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister Responsible for FedDev Ontario.
“With today’s investment for Elevate, our message is clear: we are here to support a strong, skilled, diverse and inclusive economy for everyone.”
Complementing FedDev Ontario’s investment, the City of Toronto is providing $350,000 in funding toward Elevate’s community programming and initiatives. This builds on the City’s $350,000 investment towards Elevate programming in 2020, as well as annual support from 2017 to 2019 toward the Elevate Tech festival, which brings the innovation ecosystem together and creates a platform to raise the profile of Toronto’s booming technology sector.
“Collaborating with partners like Elevate will play a key role in the reopening and recovery of our economy post-pandemic. I am pleased that the city is able to support this new initiative and with the help of the federal government’s funding commitment we will see the creation of thousands of new jobs and opportunities for some of our city’s most vulnerable communities,” said Mayor John Tory, City of Toronto.
“This innovative approach will allow us to take advantage of our booming tech industry, world-renowned post-secondary institutions and community partners to ensure that everyone is a part of our economic recovery.”
“Increasing representation in Canada’s tech sector needs all the support we can generate. We know there are roles to fill, and we also know we have untapped talent disconnected from opportunities. In 2019, we connected thousands of jobseekers with meaningful employment in the tech sector. Today, we’re excited to expand on that program and focus on groups that have been historically under-served,” said Razor Suleman, CEO and Co-Founder of Elevate.
“We have a lot of work to do so that our tech and innovation sector reflects the diverse makeup of our communities, and we’re thrilled to launch Elevate Talent to provide pathways to real jobs.”
By piloting a collaborative model with key community, learning, and hiring partners, this project will provide targeted training to build job-specific skills, fill the gaps in technical skills learning and match participants with the more than 70,000 open jobs in the GTHA’s technology sector.