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Ontario Helping More Women Build Skills and Get Jobs

$5.5M investment will support programs helping women join the workforce and gain financial independence

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 14, 2023

STAYNER, ON — Brian Saunderson, Member of Provincial Parliament for Simcoe-Grey announced today that the Ontario government is launching a call for applications and investing $5.5 million, including an additional $496,000 this year, in the Women’s Economic Security Program to expand and increase training opportunities for low-income women to equip them with the skills, knowledge and experience to find a job or start a business and increase their financial security. 

“This investment in the Women’s Economic Security Program will help more women across the province access training and supports to overcome barriers, gain skills and build rewarding careers,” said Brian Saunderson, MPP for Simcoe-Grey “I encourage organizations in the region to apply for funding so that more women in our communities have the opportunity to gain financial independence and achieve the success they deserve.”

The Women’s Economic Security Program offers training in four streams: the skilled trades, entrepreneurship, information technology and general employment. To help remove barriers to participating, the training programs also include additional supports such as providing meals throughout the training day, transportation to and from training, and support in finding child care.

Through the program, women, including those who have experienced or are at risk of intimate partner violence, can also access wraparound supports, including referrals to mental health and well-being supports, counselling, housing, and legal support.

“The Women’s Economic Security Program is empowering women with the skills they need to join the workforce and help build Ontario together,” said Charmaine Williams, Associate Minister of Women’s Social and Economic Opportunity. “We know that supporting more women in the workforce benefits Ontario’s economy, especially in in-demand sectors such as the skilled trades. These careers are exciting, provide good pay and benefits, and will empower women and girls across the province to succeed.”

Women interested in the program can visit The call for applications for eligible service providers looking to deliver the program is also now open. The deadline to apply is January 26, 2024, and information about the program and the application process is available at

Investing in the Women’s Economic Security Program is one more way Ontario is removing barriers so more women can excel as entrepreneurs, in leadership roles, and in jobs where they are underrepresented like the skilled trades. In addition to $5 million invested in this program, Ontario is providing another $496,000 for projects this fiscal year. The additional funding is provided through the bilateral agreement on the National Action Plan to End Gender-based Violence in Ontario with the federal government.


  • Organizations funded under the Women’s Economic Security Program deliver employment, pre-employment, pre-apprenticeship, and entrepreneurship training to low-income women.
  • Since its inception in 2018, the Women’s Economic Security Program has helped more than 2,100 women secure employment, become entrepreneurs or pursue further training and/or education. This includes helping 1,298 women start small businesses and 237 get jobs in the skilled trades.


Women’s Economic Security Program

Available funding opportunities from the Ontario Government

Ontario helping more women build skills and get jobs

The Governments of Canada and Ontario sign bilateral agreement to end gender-based violence