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Focus on Indigenous initiatives and partnerships

We are committed to an inclusive approach to skills development, which includes ongoing innovation projects and research to better inform and support skills training and economic recovery in First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities across Canada.

Indigenous communities and businesses play an important role in generating wealth and jobs for local communities, and levels of self-employment and entrepreneurship are increasing. A total of 350,000 Indigenous youths will come of age by 2026 (Source: Public Policy Forum), and now is the time to address youth underemployment and the lack of essential skills among Indigenous youth and adults.

Indigenous workers have found themselves in a more vulnerable position economically due to the health and economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, between February and May 2020, Indigenous workers lost 51,000 jobs, a national  loss rate of 14 per cent. While Indigenous men and women were hit equally hard by the initial labour market impact of the pandemic, the employment rate for Indigenous men rebounded strongly through the summer of 2020 and again from March to May 2021. By May, it had changed little compared with February 2020 at 58.4% (Source: Statistics Canada). Despite this recovery, the employment rate for Indigenous men remains lower than that of non-Indigenous men.

How has the pandemic affected Indigenous workers?

FSC Advisory Board member Kory Wilson discusses the impact of the pandemic on the Indigenous workforce.

Skills training and post-secondary education are two essential pillars needed  to support sustainable Indigenous economic development and to help build self-sufficient First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities. In collaboration with Indigenous leaders, organizations and communities across Canada, the Future Skills Centre has been advancing research and innovation projects to identify the skills most needed by Indigenous workers today and tomorrow.

Learn more about our partnerships and initiatives supporting Indigenous workers

A young indigenous woman in a library.

Indigenous ICT Development Centre

Exploring approaches to build awareness and capacity in the information and communications technology sector for…
Group of students listening in a classroom.

Leadership development for Indigenous communities

Indigenous communities will be empowered through a national Indigenous leadership program with links to industry…
Highschool students holding up sign with science symbols.

STEM skills and an innovation mindset for youth

This project develops STEM skills and an innovation mindset among youth.
Two young individuals in a boat holding up a plankton net.

Securing sustainable northern fisheries

This partnership supports small-scale Arctic fisheries by introducing and promoting locally harvested products to Canada’s…
Indigenous Canadian using a mobile device

Project Connect: Technology-enabled learning for Métis communities

Project Connect will design and test an online delivery model for a professional project administrator…
Overhead view of group of Indigenous people smiling

Upskill and certify Indigenous child and youth practitioners

Create innovative educational opportunities that reduce barriers to Indigenous peoples’ participation and increase the number…

Discover reports on new approaches to Indigenous skills development

Silhouette of a woman completing a mathematics question on a white board

Learning Together: STEM Outreach Programs for Indigenous Students

In Learning Together: STEM Outreach Programs for Indigenous Students, we were interested in free STEM…
Father, mother and two young children hugging

Mapping the Landscape: Indigenous Skills Training and Jobs in Canada

Indigenous businesses are growing and — importantly — creating employment for others. Further, self-employment and…
Construction worker in safety goggles

Digital Differences: The impact of automation on the Indigenous economy in Canada

How is technological change, and specifically automation, affecting Indigenous workers in Canada? Digital Differences looks…
Two people chatting at a coffee table

Building Inclusive Workplaces

A one-size-fits-all approach to pandemic recovery will not work. Programs tailored to the specific needs…

Linking Skills to Employment in Inuit Nunangat

The economic opportunities currently available in Inuit Nunangat are not balanced. Economic opportunities in the…
Two Indigenous students walking and smiling

Twin Efforts: Opportunities for Collaboration in Indigenous Post-Secondary Educationexternal link icon

Indigenous Institutes play an essential role in helping Indigenous peoples—Canada’s fastest-growing population—prepare for the labour…