A non-profit organization called Women Building Futures (WBF) is dedicated to fostering economic security for women in non-traditional industries and has announced the graduation of its first cohort of the BHP Trades Readiness program in Saskatchewan, coinciding with International Women's Day.

WBF has helped women in Alberta and British Columbia to overcome barriers to entry in industries where they are traditionally underrepresented. The graduation of this group shows the organization's efforts to create a more diverse and inclusive workforce by empowering women with skills, knowledge, and confidence to succeed. 

“We are proud to see our first BHP Trades Readiness cohort graduate and join the workforce, becoming vital economic contributors to their families and communities. This program has provided these women with the tools they need to succeed in the trades and pave the way for more women to follow in their footsteps,” said Carol Moen, CEO of Women Building Futures. “Over the last 25 years, WBF has grown to become a trusted name in its focus industries for introductory training in Alberta and British Columbia and we are excited to bring this model to Saskatchewan. We are committed to staying here and continuing to support unemployed and underemployed women in this region for a long time to come.”

“Congratulations to all the graduates. We are excited to see what success lays ahead for you as you take these next steps in your career,” said Simon Thomas, President Potash at BHP. “Building a gender-balanced workforce that is safe, culturally diverse, and inclusive is so important to BHP. Not only is it the right thing do, but it also supports better business outcomes. Our partnership with Women Building Futures is key to how we will make this happen, while also creating a positive impact within the broader community.”

The BHP Trades Readiness is a 9-week training program that provides women with knowledge, safety certificates, and hands-on skills to start a career in the mining industry. Graduates are equipped to start their careers in the trades and help fill the skilled labor gap in Saskatchewan and beyond. 

“With the graduation of the first cohort of the BHP Trades Readiness program in Saskatchewan, Women Building Futures is excited to continue expanding their model and empowering more women across the country,” says Women Building Futures in a release.