London, Ontario, May 11, 2012 – Government representatives gathered in London today to celebrate the official opening of the Goodwill Social Enterprise Abilities Centre.
The new, 83,000-square-foot facility features a full service career centre providing employment services, skills development and training, a community store, donation centre, a centre for social and cultural collaboration and several community gathering spaces. Scheduled to open later this year is Edgar and Joe's Cafe for Life, a social enterprise initiative dedicated to several social goals, including culinary and customer service training. The facility offers an inclusive environment and gives support and equal opportunities to all residents in Southwestern Ontario regardless of their age, ability or background.
"Canada's Economic Action Plan continues to deliver results across the country and I'm delighted our investments are paying off here in London," said Ed Holder, Member of Parliament for London West, on behalf of the Honourable Denis Lebel, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities.
"Our government is proud to support projects that create new opportunities for jobs and growth, and this new facility will enable Goodwill to continue providing key programs and contribute to the community for decades to come."
"I'm very proud that our government made the choice to invest in this amazing Enterprise Abilities Centre," said Deb Matthews, MPP for London North Centre.
"With strategic investments, like this, we're helping to create jobs that will benefit so many London area residents now and in the future."
"Goodwill has located this amazing facility in the heart of our SoHo community and it will contribute to the continuing change and evolution of this neighbourhood. Goodwill and the City make great partners, as both work toward achieving social and environmental goals that benefit all Londoners," said Mayor Joe Fontana, City of London.
"We applaud our governments for making the non-profit and voluntary sector a priority for the stimulus program. This unprecedented move to provide infrastructure support for a sector that often struggles with capacity and financial vibrancy has yielded significant social, cultural and environmental results across our community and Goodwill," said Michelle Quintyn, President and Chief Executive Officer.
The governments of Canada and Ontario each contributed over $3.89 million toward eligible project costs through the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund. In addition, the City of London contributed $600,000. Goodwill Industries, Ontario Great Lakes, contributed the balance of the total project cost of $11.69 million.
As part of the Government of Canada's Economic Action Plan, the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund supported more than 4,100 infrastructure projects across the country, including over 2,000 key infrastructure projects in Ontario.
Canada's Economic Action Plan 2012 focuses on creating new opportunities for jobs and growth, and securing long-term prosperity for Canadians. Investing in public infrastructure is an important part of this strategy. Thanks to the Government of Canada's leadership, and our strong economic and financial fundamentals, the Canadian economy has recovered from the global recession better than most other countries. Canada has been a leader among G-7 countries throughout the recovery with more than 690,000 net new jobs created since July 2009. To learn more about the opportunities in Economic Action Plan 2012, visit www.budget.gc.ca.
This project also supports Building Together, the Government of Ontario's long-term infrastructure plan to repair, rebuild and renew the province's roads and highways, bridges, public transit, schools and postsecondary institutions, hospitals and courthouses. Including investments in 2011-12, Ontario has invested $75 billion in infrastructure since 2003.Building modern, efficient infrastructure has created or preserved close to 100,000 jobs each year, on average, making Ontario's economy more productive and improving quality of life, now and in the future.
For additional information about investments in infrastructure, visit infrastructure.gc.ca.
For further information about Canada's Economic Action Plan, visit actionplan.gc.ca.
For more information on how Ontario is revitalizing its infrastructure, visit ontario.ca/infrastructure.
Office of the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities
Ontario Ministry of Infrastructure
Mayor Joe Fontana
519-661-2500 extension 4646