Grey County and YMCA Owen Sound Grey Bruce were presented an Award of Excellence for their Local Workforce Development Initiative last night at the annual Economic Developers Council of Ontario (EDCO) Conference in Toronto.
The EDCO Awards of Excellence recognize unique ideas that lead economic development best practices of the future. Grey County Warden Brian Milne accepted the award, alongside YMCA and Grey County staff.
The workforce development initiative is a collaboration between Grey County Economic Development, YMCA Employment Services, Georgian College, Adult Learning Centres, and all 19 public and private long-term care (LTC) homes in Grey and Bruce Counties. It addresses the local struggle to attract and retain staff into the LTC sector by assisting job seekers to fulfill a career in healthcare.
“Georgian College’s Grey-Bruce campus in Owen Sound values the opportunity and responsibility of building educational infrastructure in the communities we serve,” said Dave Shorey, Executive Director, Georgian College Owen Sound Campus. “Our ability to collaborate with driven and passionate partners to solve critical workforce development needs builds the regional capacity needed to thrive in years ahead.”
The program identified real barriers to employment and provided individual supports to participants to address these barriers and gain sector specific skills. Through this program, 137 participants were successfully trained, placed and retained into LTC in Grey and Bruce counties over the last year, helping homes reduce staff shortages and providing individuals and families with more stable income.
“Through successful sector-focused workforce development partnerships we were able to help job seekers obtain the necessary training and provide job ready, skilled workers to meet the critical LTC workforce needs,” said Linda Alexander, Manager, YMCA Owen Sound Grey Bruce Employment Services. “Feedback from participants has been consistently positive and many indicated they would not have considered working in LTC without the training and support they received.”
“Collaboration is central to our success with this initiative,” said Brian Milne, Grey County Warden. “We knew a one-size-fits-all-approach to LTC staffing just wasn’t working. Our cooperative approach and partnership with the Province brought the right people to the table to really listen to the challenges and find innovative solutions. It’s an honour to be recognized by EDCO for our work on this initiative.”
The Local Workforce Development Initiative is delivered at the Sydenham Campus, Grey County’s regional training and skills center in Owen Sound. For more information about the campus or its programs, contact email@example.com.