Community benefits spotlight: Hammer Heads

Four years ago West Park Healthcare Centre signed a landmark declaration to support our communities by pledging to provide training and employment opportunities to individuals from underrepresented and equity-seeking groups.

In December, 2018, the Community Benefits and Apprenticeship Declaration was signed, making West Park the first Ontario hospital to include a community benefits agreement in its capital project. This required EllisDon to aim to provide 10 per cent of all trade and craft working hours, on a trade-by-trade basis, to be performed by qualified apprentices or journeypersons from historically disadvantaged communities or equity-seeking groups.

The declaration's signatories include the Central Ontario Building Trades (COBT), EllisDon Infrastructure Healthcare, Infrastructure Ontario, Toronto Community Benefits Network, the United Way Greater Toronto, and West Park.

The COBT’s Hammer Heads Program has been an integral part of this vision. The Program was founded in 2009 to support at-risk youth through skills and employment-based training opportunities within the construction industry. Through the program, youth from under-resourced neighbourhoods in our communities gain apprenticeship career opportunities.

Watch the video below to learn more about this invaluable program.