Group Sponsorship Grant (GSG)

Group Sponsorship Grant (GSG): Up to $3M in Apprenticeship Grants

The Group Sponsorship Grant (GSG) program aims to address employer and apprentice challenges in Ontario’s skilled trades and apprenticeship system by encouraging the use of apprenticeships in the workplace through group sponsorships.

This program provides up to $1,000,000 annually, up to a maximum of three years, in non-repayable government funding.

According to Ontario provincial website, the average age of an Ontario journeyperson is 47 years old. Skilled trade industries are facing a skilled-trades shortage with some saying that “by 2029, we will be short about 100,000 tradespeople if we don’t do anything” (Source). This is where non-repayable government funding programs like GSG help close the gap.

Funding Snapshot: Group Sponsorship Grant (GSG)

Amount of Funding:

Eligible applicants can receive funding for a period between one to three years, with a maximum funding contribution of $1,000,000 per year.

Eligible Applicants:

  • For-profit businesses, professional associations, employee organizations;
  • Non-profit organizations, union affiliated organizations/training trust funds; and
  • Social agencies, local planning groups / community action groups, charitable foundations, municipal governments.

Group sponsors can be prospective, new, or already existing, including workforce intermediaries, employer-unions, and cooperatives.

Eligible Projects:

Applicants must include one or more of the following key activities to support their success in acquiring new apprentices, supporting training progression, and enhancing their group sponsorship network and service:

  • Apprentice candidate pre-screening, on-the-job and in class trades readiness and/or employability and life skills coaching.
  • Centralized on-the-job mentoring supports for apprentices.
  • Recruitment and retention of apprentices and employees, including those from underrepresented groups, facilitating registration with the ministry.
  • Marketing apprenticeship to SME employers including those in rural and remote communities.
  • Training for employers and journeypersons to encourage supportive workplace environments that result in higher completion rates.
  • Placement of apprentices with employers based on business needs, available training opportunities, and the competency level of apprentices.
  • Rotation of apprentices in the group sponsorship model for exposure to all aspects of the trade, hours, and skill tracking, and additional training as required.
  • Apprentice end-of-training supports, including submission of completion documentation, pre-exam assistance and transition to journeyperson status.

Eligible Costs:

  • Staffing, Travel for group sponsor staff;
  • Marketing (marketing, promotion, distribution);
  • Mentorship and Training (Mentorship support for apprentices and train-the-trainer resources for journeypersons); and
  • Employer/Apprentice Support (Health and safety related equipment such as PPE and end-of-training/pre-exam assistance).

Application Deadline and Timelines:

This program is accepting applicants on an ongoing basis. It may take up to 2 months for the Ministry review to be completed.

Apply for Group Sponsorship Grant (GSG)

If your organization is interested in this skilled trades grant program, then consider applying for this Ontario provincial funding program with Mentor Works professional government application writing team at 1-888-599-3111. We take care of the application process, providing you with an estimated 95% time-savings when compared to writing applications in-house.

Businesses interested in Canadian wage subsidy programs can download our free How to Recruit Top Talent slide deck to find out how you can begin planning your recruitment process, what wage subsidies are available, and which job boards are most effective.

Where to Recruit Recent University Graduates


    1. Hi Sharon – Yes, absolutely! We recommend you explore this list of Startup Resources if you have <15 employees, as there are several options to help young businesses build a strong foundation for future growth. If your business has 15 or more Canadian payroll employees, has been incorporated for 3+ years, and has positive net income, we would also recommend you explore this list of government funding for mature businesses or reach out to us at Mentor Works so we can help you identify funding opportunities for your established business.

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