Several Canadian initiatives dedicated to boosting participation in tech have received funding from the TD Ready Challenge, which earmarks $10 million in grants for US and Canadian initiatives each year.
The program dedicates $1 million each to winning companies. Toronto-based FutureFit AI, which is building a platform to re-skill and upskill the workforce, was one such startup that also
got selected for the US Department of Education’s Reimagining Higher Education Ecosystem Challenge Top 25. FutureFit was formerly known as AudaciousYou, allowing participants to learn technical skills and human skills by working on a series of individual and team challenges.
“These awards substantiate FutureFit AI’s work in helping learners and workers discover and pursue future-proof skills and careers in the age of AI and automation without being limited by their age, stage or background,” said Hamoon Ekhtiari, the founder and CEO. “With up to 1 billion people requiring new skills by 2050, the future of work presents a challenge for both corporate executives and government leaders. We need a Google Maps for the future of work to re-imagine hiring, higher education, learning and training.”
Ontario-based Canada Learning Code received $1 million to target mid-career individuals seeking more digital literacy skills, acting as a bridge for career transitions. In Alberta, Windmill Microlending received funding to provide up to $10,000 grants for newcomers to Canada building Canadian credentials.
“The changing workplace presents new opportunities for a prosperous economy, but we must grow in ways that provide everyone with a chance to succeed,” said Bharat Masrani, group president and CEO of TD Bank Group. “Fortunately, there is no shortage of innovative ideas to support greater income stability – ideas that can open doors and help people feel more confident in their future.”
Read more about the grant recipients here.