New Brunswick Aboriginal Workplace Essential Skills Project (NBAWES) – Pilot Project

This pilot project ended in 2012, though the NBAWES curriculum continues to be utilized throughout the province of New Brunswick.

The NBAWES Pilot Project worked to improve literacy skills among the Mi’kmaq and Maliseet populations in New Brunswick by adapting the Workplace Essential Skills (WES) curriculum to be culturally relevant to the learners. Adult learners in Miramichi and Fredericton spent 30 weeks with teachers and coaches improving their Literacy and Essential Skills. The program developed culturally-specific content to meet the distinctive needs of First Nations adults. Upon completion of the first pilot project, the NBAWES curriculum was adapted and used by another project, the New Brunswick Aboriginal Information and Communications Technology Project (NBAICT).

The Essential Skills curriculum and teacher trainer kit is for Aboriginal adult learners with a regional (Atlantic) focus, but is applicable nationally. All 9 Essential Skills are included in the training with emphasis on reading, writing and numeracy. The curriculum is available online at COPIAN (
The vision of NBAWES is that all Mi’kmaq and Maliseet adult residents of New Brunswick have the literacy and workplace skills to make career choices that will fulfill their dreams and aspirations.

Location New Brunswick
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Karen LeBlanc, Joint Economic Development Initiative (JEDI)
506-444-5650, Toll Free: 888-884-9870
11-150 Cliffe Street, Fredericton, NB E3A 0A1

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