Canada and Canadian community colleges building skilled workforces in developing countries

Source :

May 31, 2012

Ottawa―Today, the Honourable Beverley J. Oda, Minister of International Cooperation, announced Canada’s support for a new Education for Employment (EFE) initiative to meet the growing demand for a skilled workforce in developing countries. Working with the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC), this initiative will provide further support to build a country’s institutional capacity to fill the need to hire trained employees as their economies grow. Minister Oda announced a new initiative for the Andean region in addition to an extension to an existing EFE initiative in Africa, based on significant results it already achieved.

Sustainable economic growth is the most effective way to achieve poverty reduction because it provides gainful employment opportunities and increases incomes that result in stronger families, improved communities, and a better future for their countries. During this time of global economic restraint, developing and emerging countries will see their economies grow faster than in many industrialized countries,” said Minister Oda. “The increased demand for a skilled workforce must be met locally and Canada is intent on helping developing countries build their capacity so their own people can fill future employment opportunities. Together, with ACCC, we have built a unique model that engages public and private partners in education and training institutions, a model that will meet the needs of local employers.”

The Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) has developed EFE initiatives in partnership with the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC) in Africa, South America and the Caribbean.

The EFE initiative in Africa began in September 2008 in Mozambique, Senegal, and Tanzania, and has already achieved significant results in all three countries. With CIDA’s support, this project has developed 56 technical and professional training programs and 21 entrepreneurial modules, and trained 514  trainers and 105 academic administrators. With the engagement of the private sector and educational institutions, the program has created networks connecting employers, educators and government. The Government of Canada’s contribution, through CIDA, is $20 million from 2008 to 2012. Today, Minister Oda announced an extension for an additional $2.8 million over 9 months from October 2012 to June 2013.

“When training and market needs come together, then we can achieve outcomes that result in stronger enterprises and more employment, which really drives economic growth. Canada’s colleges and institutions have helped to build our own economy to become one of the strongest globally. The ACCC will continue to be a partner with CIDA to effectively address poverty reduction in developing countries,” concluded Minister Oda.

The Minister also announced a new EFE initiative for the Andean region that will help establish a network of institutional partners, increasing institutional capacity and creating opportunities for people in the region. The Government of Canada’s contribution through CIDA is $19.6 million over 5 years from 2012 to 2017.



Project profile for Education for Employment

Generate this profile: CSV XML
Project Profile
Title Education for Employment
Project Number S064248-PRG
Maximum CIDA Contribution $ 20,000,000
Executing Agency – Partner ACCC – Association of Canadian Community Colleges 
Status Operational
Start – End 2008 – 2012
Democratic governance
Public sector policy and administrative management (015110): 10%
Private sector development
Vocational training (011330): 63%
Agricultural education/training (031181): 17%
Business support services and institutions (025010): 10%
This program Education for Employment (EFE) aims to support the private sector development in Senegal, Tanzania and Mozambique through workforce training and micro-enterprise support in sectors of the economy where there is a lack of qualified workers and entrepreneurs. Goal : Poverty reduction by supporting private sector development focusing, on the one hand, on the needs of businesses in the targeted sectors for stability, and the creation and maintenance of sustainable jobs and, on the other hand, social integration by contributing to an expansion of continuing education for the labour force which is transferable and produces qualified graduates. Objectives : Creation of sustainable partnerships which contribute to the improvement and establishment of national policies to match training to employment needs, to the implementation of institutional services for the benefit of employers, their employees and the self-employed, and to increased employability of the general public.
Expected Results
This is a new feature, part of CIDA’s efforts towards increasing transparency. Information will only be available for projects approved after October 15, 2011. For other projects, information on expected results is usually included in the description.


ACCC – Association of Canadian Community Colleges 

International Recruitment

Canada lags behind other OECD countries in the proportion of international students attending postsecondary institutions. For example, in the U.K. and in the U.S., the percentage of international students attending postsecondary institutions has more than doubled.

International students bring an economic impact to Canada. They support Canadian colleges and institutes’ efforts to internationalize their campuses. Many also decide to stay on and become successful Canadian immigrants with recognized credentials.

Countries that recruit large numbers of international students have put in place efficient national recruitment bodies and funding mechanisms, which is what Canada now needs from its Federal Government. ACCC is one of five key educational institutions that have formed a Canadian Consortium on International Student Marketing.

Intercultural skills are increasingly viewed as very important by employers in this globalized world, but very few college students have opportunities to study outside the country. A national survey has identified lack of funding as the main impediment for students.

Related Material

Internationalizing Canadian Colleges and Institutes: The First National Report on International Education and Mobility
(June 2010, PDF – 13 pages, 3 mb)




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