The newest group of nine students enrolled in the Residential Energy and Efficiency Works (REnEW) training program, recently held in Williams Lake, have now graduated.
The graduates are Johnnie Phillips, Allan West, Dean Chelsea, David Dan, Nelson Char Jr., Robert Guichon, Shawn Char, Sheldon Bowe, and Dustin Hinksman. The program is funded by FortisBC and BC Hydro.
“This program helps individuals facing employment barriers develop new skills towards working in the growing field of energy efficiency retrofits, as well as entry-level trade/construction,” says Tom Loski, vice-president of customer service at FortisBC. “Contributing to the economic and social well being of the communities where we live and work is important to our company. Since the REnEW program’s launch last year, we have seen the positive effects of this program both for graduates and the energy-efficiency sector.”
In addition to learning about the fundamentals of energy efficiency technologies and the installation of these technologies in existing homes, the REnEW program also includes training in first aid and fall protection. Graduates are now better equipped to work with organizations in the energy-efficiency industry.
“I would like to personally congratulate the individuals who have graduated from this program and am excited about the work they will be doing in their communities to advance energy conservation and efficiency,” said Lisa Coltart, B.C. Hydro’s executive director of Power Smart.
The REnEW program will continue throughout 2011 and the course will be offered in B.C. communities where energy efficiency programs already exist. The goal of the program is to support the growing energy efficiency retrofit industry by creating a much-needed pool of skilled workers for this emerging field. Participants in this class were selected by the Cariboo Chilcotin Aboriginal Training Employment Centre in partnership with the Cariboo Friendship Society.
“The Cariboo Friendship Society is an urban Aboriginal organization and we are committed to long-term conservation and sustainability. The REnEW program teaches our young men how to work in an industry that is now more concerned about long-term effects to mother earth and we are pleased to be a part of this initiative,” said Rosanna McGregor, assistant director of the Cariboo Friendship Society.
Further background on the REnEW program in Williams Lake and application process is available by contacting the Cariboo Friendship Society at 250-398-6831.