Google Canada grants $2.7M to tech training for underrepresented communities

Google Canada grants $2.7M to tech training for underrepresented communities

The tech giant Google has decided to allocate $2.7 million in grants in an attempt to empower Canadians to stay safe online.

The grant is directed towards Indigenous Peoples, with a goal of training underrepresented communities for tech jobs and teaching media literacy. More than $1.3 million out of this pool will be given to the Winnipeg professional development and training charity ComIT for development of skills and overcoming the education gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous populations.

Google grants this money with a goal to prepare Indigenous workers and boost the community for new careers in the tech space. The money will be spent on ComIT’s Recoding Futures program, focusing on programming languages and software, more specifically classes on HTML, JavaScript, CSS, .NET, Python, React and Node technologies.

A sum of $670,000 will be provided to the Ottawa-based science, tech, and math organization Actua, which will attempt to expand a program and teach youth from vulnerable groups how to be safe online and how to detect misinformation. Actua’s program will serve youth from under-resourced communities and groups that are underrepresented in science, we well as racialized youth, youth from low-income families, and so on.

“ComIT is thrilled to receive continued support from Google to bring free technology training to Indigenous students across Canada, and increase Indigenous representation in the Canadian tech sector,” said Pablo Listingart, Executive Director, ComIT. “Since announcing the Recoding Futures program in 2020, over 1,600 Indigenous students have registered for the program, with over 800 students having completed or currently enrolled.”

New grants that aim to support online safety are also something that Google is preparing, mainly in attempt to combat disinformation among under-served communities. Research shows that even 42% of Canadians experienced at least one cyber security incident during the pandemic, which led to the increase in cyber threat actors and complexity.

As a recap, 2021 was a great year for Google – the tech giant helped drive over 235 million direct connections for Canadian businesses, while it’s Search and Ads platforms are supporting $1.7 billion in exports for the Canadian economy.

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