Skills Development Fund Capital Stream: Business Grants to Tackle Labour Market Shortage

There has been a big push in recent years to promote careers in skilled trades, specifically to youth and women, due to demand for skilled workers. To reduce the continued labour market shortage for skilled trades positions, the province is investing additional funding to create opportunities for training newcomers into the industry.

As part of the Skills Development Fund (SDF), a new funding stream called the Capital Stream aims to support Ontario workforce development partners to build new training centres, upgrade existing training centres, and/or convert existing buildings into training centres to support skills training for in-demand roles.

Eligible applicants can access up to 49% of project costs in grant funding from the Skills Development Fund – Capital Stream with no maximum amount restrictions. This program is open until September 25, 2023, or until funding is depleted.

Funding Snapshot: Skills Development Fund – Capital Stream (SDF-C)

Through the Skills Development Fund – Capital Stream, eligible applicants can access grant funding support for upgrades to training centres, updates to existing buildings, and/or the building of new training centres in pursuit of expanding the skilled trades workforce.  

Program Objective

Through the new Skills Development Fund – Capital Stream program, the Government of Ontario hopes to create and improve skilled trades training capacity and number of trainees throughout the province.

This program hopes to increase retention of skilled trainees for jobs in emerging and in-demand growth skilled trades sectors to support Ontario’s economy while the province is experiencing labour market challenges.

Funding Amount

  • Up to 49% of total eligible costs in non-repayable funding;
  • There are no maximum or minimum funding amounts; and
  • Projects with $150,000+ budget will be prioritized.

Eligible Applicants

The following organizations are eligible to apply as a primary applicant: 

  • Employers in Ontario (other than the educational organizations listed as being eligible to apply as partners);
  • Minister-approved, non-college apprenticeship program training delivery agents;
  • Non-profit organizations including Indigenous band offices and Indigenous Skills and Employment Training agreement holders;
  • Professional, industry or employer associations;
  • Trade unions or union-affiliated organizations;
  • Municipalities;
  • Hospitals;
  • District Social Services Administration Boards; and
  • Consolidated Municipal Service Managers.

The following educational organizations are eligible to apply as a partner:

  • District school boards;
  • Publicly assisted colleges, universities, or Indigenous Institutes in Ontario;
  • Private career colleges; and
  • Private universities with consent from the Ministry of Colleges and Universities to offer degrees.

Participant Groups:

All proposalsmust support one or more of the following groups:

  • Jobseekers and/or Incumbent Workers who are at risk of job displacement;
  • Workers that are needed to fill unmet demand and talent gaps; and/or
  • Jobseekers who face higher barriers to employment, including, but not limited to:
    •  Women;
    • Youth;
    • People with Disabilities;
    • Seniors;
    • Francophones;
    • Indigenous Peoples;
    • Racialized Persons;
    • Justice-Involved Individuals;
    • Immigrants;
    • Protected persons; and
    • Those impacted by emergency travel measures enacted by the federal government such as Ukrainians who are in Ontario under the Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel.

Program Timeline

The intake period opened on June 30, 2023 and closes on September 25, 2023.

Government Funding for Hiring and Training Projects

While this stream is focused on creating and upgrading physical spaces, the core focus of upskilling Ontario’s in-demand workforce is of utmost importance.

If your business is planning on expanding or developing your workforce, you should also be aware that there are various Canadian funding programs for small business hiring and training projects to support ongoing and future business plans.

Funding programs such as the Canada Job Grant (CJG) provide up to 50-100% of eligible costs in covering the costs of new and existing employee training programs.

Register for our free weekly e-newsletter or sign up for a free upcoming webinar to learn more about grants, loans, and tax incentive programs which your Canadian business may be eligible for.

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