Blueprint Projects

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Theme 2: Retaining and Promoting Women in Non-Traditional and Under-Represented Sectors

Project Goal

To increase and sustain the advancement of women in non-traditional sectors and in sectors where women are under-represented.

These sectors include: science, engineering, trades, technology and others such as the media where women remain under-represented in senior and decision-making roles.

Project Objectives

  1. To enable women employed in non-traditional and under-represented sectors to develop the knowledge and skills they require to more actively participate and advance in their sector.
  2. To enable women employed in non-traditional and under-represented sectors to work with employers and industry stakeholders to overcome barriers and create work environments that are respectful and inclusive of women.

Description

This 24-month project will engage participants in developing/adapting programs, resources and tools to improve women's retention and advancement in non-traditional and other sectors where they remain under-represented. It will also engage women and men in their workplaces and ensure the participation of employers and industry stakeholders in supporting women's leadership and advancement in their organizations and within the sector. A "reverse mentorship" component will seek to increase employers' awareness of barriers facing women employees. Innovative models and proven supports will then be shared with other organizations and communities working on similar issues across Canada.

Funding Available

Up to $300,000 for a 24-month project.

Key Activities

  1. Planproject and adapt to specific local, sector or target group needs.
    • Conduct a gender-based analysis and needs assessment to identify the institutional and other barriers to women's retention and promotion within the sector, involving both the women and the major employers affected.
    • Potential allies or project partners (e.g. employers and industry associations) will also need to be identified and consulted.
  2. Develop/adapt/programs, resources and tools to address these barriers. For example,
    • leadership training programs for women already employed in target sectors;
    • resources, policies, and supports for employers and industry stakeholders to promote diversity within their workplaces and create environments that are respectful and inclusive of women.
  3. Delivery and implementation.
    • Work with women in target sectors to deliver resources and actions that support their retention and advancement in these sectors. Projects will incorporate a "reverse mentoring" component to increase senior management's awareness of barriers facing women employees.
      Reverse mentoring pairs people in senior positions with those in more junior positions to help identify barriers to gender diversity, with the junior person acting as the mentor. Reverse mentoring is based on the principle of inclusive and respectful exchange of knowledge.
    • Work with women, employers and industry stakeholders to develop workplaces that are respectul and inclusive of women.
    • Pilot tools and approaches to ensure their effectiveness.
    • Network and engage with allies and other organizations.
  4. Evaluate the project
  5. Share results

Planned Results

  • Project participants can identify and have increased understanding of barriers to women's retention and advancement in target sectors.
  • Employers and/or industry stakeholders have increased awareness of the issues and the challenges facing women in target sectors.
  • Project participants have demonstrated leadership and decision-making knowledge and skills to support their advancement in target sectors.

Longer-Term Results (after project's end)

  • Project participants are actively engaging with employers to address the issues and challenges to women's retention and advancement in target sectors.
  • Employers are acting strategically within their organizations to help retain and advance women in target sectors.

Project Deliverables (after approval)

Month 4

Detailed work plan and budget, list of project allies and partners, results management framework, evaluation plan.

Month 12

Interim report and strategy to share knowledge.

Month 24

Final report and evaluation.