Organization in Saguenay creating inclusive skills training for Canadians living with ADHD

SAGUENAY, QC, March 1, 2024 /CNW/ – Canada’s job market continues to evolve, offering new opportunities and areas for growth for Canadians. Now more than ever, it is critical that we expand and strengthen our workforce and get Canadians the skills and resources they need to thrive. That is why the Government is investing in projects that will help Canadians improve their foundational and transferable skills.

Today, the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Pascale St-Onge, on behalf of the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Official Languages, Randy Boissonnault, visited Saguenay to highlight nearly one million dollars in funding to Association PANDA Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean which has helped create skills training opportunities and inclusive supports for Canadians with Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Association PANDA Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean received this funding in 2021 from the Skills for Success Program through a solicited call for proposals process.

Association PANDA Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean’s innovative project, “Compétences à venir,” promotes its inclusive training tools and interactive web platforms to Canadians in both official languages, with the goal of improving access to skills development for Canadians with ADHD., These online tools help individuals build organizational skills by strengthening their memory at work through communication, teaching problem solving through collaboration and managing emotions. This project is among many that are helping to contribute to the Government’s commitment to create 500,000 new training and work opportunities for Canada, as announced in Budget 2021.

Minister Saint-Onge highlighted this investment during a visit to Association PANDA Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean which was founded more than 25 years ago by a group of parents with children that have ADHD. For more information on the online tools made available through Association PANDA Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean’s innovative project, please visit

The Government of Canada’s Skills for Success Program focuses on nine main skills that Canadians need to participate, adapt and thrive in learning, work and life. They include foundational skills, like writing, reading and numeracy, and socio-emotional skills—the human skills required for effective social interaction, such as collaboration, communication, problem solving, adaptability, and creativity and innovation.

Today’s announcement supports the Government’s ongoing actions to increase training opportunities for Canadians. It also responds to the immediate and long-term training needs of Canadians, particularly for under-represented groups in the labour market, including persons with disabilities, racialized Canadians, Indigenous peoples, members of official language minority communities and newcomers.


“Investing in innovating and caring associations, such as PANDA, is key to creating accessible and innovative training opportunities for all Canadians. The success of Canada’s future, both economically and socially, revolves around providing Canadian workers with ample opportunities to acquire the skills and resources that they need to succeed in the today’s workforce. Through investments like this, our government is helping to ensure that more Canadians break into the workforce, advance professionally in their careers, and do so with confidence.”
– Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Official languages, Randy Boissonnault

“To create a stronger and more inclusive Canada, workers must have access to inclusive training supports that meet their needs and ensures their success in Canada’s workforce. This is what PANDA does. Its online platform has helped empower hundreds of workers across the country, by breaking down barriers to employment and providing Canadians with the tools and resources they need to find good quality jobs and progress in their careers.”
– Minister of Canadian Heritage, Pascale St-Onge

“It’s time to change how we view ADHD! We believe that with the right tools and support from their employers, employees with ADHD are an incredible asset to any team. With the Bambooza training platform, funded through Employment and Social Development’s Skills for Success program, we’re helping Canadians with ADHD develop the best strategies for the workplace.”
Dominique Simard, Executive Director, Association PANDA Saguenay–Lac-St-Jean

Quick Facts

Budget 2021 invested an additional $298 million over three years to the Skills For Success Program. This funding will support Canadians at all skill levels to improve their foundational and transferable skills to better prepare for, get and keep a job, and to adapt and succeed at work. Association PANDA Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean’s contribution agreement under the Skills for Success Program was approved to run for 16 months from November 30, 2022, to March 31, 2024.

Additionally, since 2021, the Association PANDA Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean has been approved for a total of $24,000 in funding through the Government of Canada’s Canada Summer Jobs Program for four projects that provided summer employment opportunities to youth. The Government’s Canada Summer Jobs Program supports job opportunities for young people in Canada between the ages of 15 and 30 by helping them to gain work experience and skills they need to transition into the labour market.

Approximately half of Canadians lack the literacy, numeracy, and digital skills that are increasingly necessary to succeed in jobs in the knowledge economy.

It is estimated that a 1% increase in average literacy rates in Canada, over time, is associated with an increase in the gross domestic product (GDP) of up to 3% and an increase in productivity of up to 5%. Investments in women and individuals with the lowest literacy levels would have the greatest effect on growth.

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