The Aboriginal Skills Group, started in 2005 as the Vancouver Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership (VanAsep), is a non-profit partnership project dedicated to increasing Aboriginal employment in strategic markets. The society proudly collaborates with First Nation communities, Métis Provincial Council and with both industry and training institutions.
We are ITA-designated to train and certify Aboriginals with the knowledge, experience and qualification that industries need, ensuring Aboriginal employment by training qualified, experienced workers when and where they are needed.
Since 2005 over 2000 clients have participated in the Construction Careers program and over 1000 Aboriginal people are currently registered as trades apprentices. We began as the training authority to support Aboriginal employment in the lead up to the 2010 Winter Olympics, initially focusing on the Olympic Corridor from Tsawwassen First Nation to Lil’wat First Nation, including many major construction projects such as the Sea to Sky Highway, 2010 Olympic venues, the Richmond-Vancouver “Canada Line” Rapid Transit, and the Delta Port expansion project. The partnership was quickly recognized with an Award of Excellence in Education from the Vancouver Regional Construction Association in November 2006 and provincial designation as an ITA (Industry Training Authority of B.C.) certified trainer.
The Aboriginal Skills Group has since expanded its early training model to include Heavy Equipment Operation, Warehousing (Supply Chain), Independent Power Plant Operations and Chef training, bringing a greater wealth of opportunity to First Nation communities throughout BC.
Setting up key partnerships is essential to VanAsep, and we work with local industries identifying and facilitating employment, business and economic development opportunities for First Nations, Aboriginal people and industry alike.