Government of Canada supports Aboriginal women's project in Orillia

ORILLIA, ON, April 9 /CNW Telbec/ - On behalf of the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, and the Honourable Helena Guergis, Minister of State (Status of Women), Mr. Bruce Stanton, Member of Parliament for Simcoe North, today announced Government of Canada support for a new project that will address the needs of disadvantaged urban Inuit, Métis and First Nation women living in Simcoe County and Northern York Region.

The investment in the Biminaawzogin Regional Aboriginal Women's Circle's 24-month project, The Women's Transition Bridging Program, will empower Aboriginal women in urban settings to make the transition to a learning or employment situation.

"By providing disadvantaged Aboriginal women with the opportunity to increase their levels of education and gain valuable pre-employment skills, we are offering them a chance for a brighter future," Minister of State Guergis said. "This project will concentrate on building self-confidence and self-esteem among 25 participants while preparing them to enter the classroom or the workforce. At the end of the program, these urban Aboriginal women will have increased their knowledge of community resources and be better connected to their cultural identity and history."

The Government of Canada is providing a total of $180,972 in funding for this project, $131,860 from the Women's Community Fund of Status of Women Canada and $49,112 from the Aboriginal Women's Program of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

"This promising new project is especially important because it addresses a particularly vulnerable group of women who have traditionally struggled to achieve autonomy and economic security, and who face much higher rates of poverty and gender-based violence than other women in Canada," said Mr. Stanton.

"We are pleased to have the support of the Government of Canada for this project, which will reach out to Inuit, Métis and First Nation women in our community," said Mrs. Cheryl Sutherland of the Biminaawzogin Regional Aboriginal Women's Circle. "Through life skills training, peer mentoring and individual support, these 25 previously disadvantaged women will have a real chance to overcome long-standing barriers to their well-being."

Ce texte est également disponible en français.

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SOURCE Status of Women Canada

For further information: For further information: Jonas Langille, Special Assistant, Communications, Office of the Minister of State (Status of Women), (819) 956-4000; Nanci-Jean Waugh, Director General, Communications and Strategic Planning, Status of Women Canada, (613) 995-7839

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