Supporting Women in Skilled Trades

Contact your local office 1-866-702-6292 (OAWA)

what we do

Office to Advance Women Apprentices NS

The Office to Advance Women Apprentices Nova Scotia was created to engage and support tradeswomen working in construction trades in the province.

The office has a mandate to offer support and increase employment opportunities for tradeswomen and women entering apprenticeable trades in Nova Scotia. We offer a registry database of female tradespersons identifying trade, level of apprenticeship, employment status, resumes, travel availability, etc.

Our work includes:

  • Connecting tradeswomen to employers
  • Career services, employment supports, and networking opportunities for tradeswomen,
  • Engaging and building partnerships with key stakeholders including employers, trades unions, and training providers to improve participation and success of women in the trades, and
  • Development and maintenance of a registry database to track services provided and apprenticeship numbers of tradeswomen

National News

Office to Advance Women Apprentices expands to Cape Breton

Cape Breton is experiencing a boom in the construction industry – and with it, comes the need to grow and diversify the skilled trades workforce. To support this growth, the Office to Advance Women Apprentices has opened an office in the region that will offer wraparound support services to engage, support and grow the number of tradeswomen and apprentices. 

As a project of Canada’s Building Trades Unions, the Office to Advance Women Apprentices Cape Breton is the seventh office of its kind to open in Canada. Based on the successful Office to Advance Women Apprentices  model established in Newfoundland and Labrador in 2009, the office will work to identify and eliminate barriers to increase opportunities for women in the skilled trades. 

Maggie Budden, a Red Seal Ironworker with Local 752, has taken on the role of Project Coordinator and will lead the office, working closely with local unions, contractor and employer partners, and current and potential tradeswomen. 

Read Maggie’s journey through the trades and her understanding as to why a support office is needed for women in trades.

Featured in photo: Maggie Budden, Project Coordinator for Office to Advance Women Apprentices, Cape Breton and Jack Wall, President of Cape Breton Building Trades Union

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Join Our Network

If you’re a tradeswoman in Nova Scotia looking for employment in your trade, or a tradeswoman looking for support, register to become part of the Office to Advance Women Apprentices Nova Scotia network. 

We're committed to increasing the number of tradeswomen working in their field through directly connecting workers and employers in Nova Scotia.

By registering, we will include you in our database of apprentices who have completed trades training programs, matching you with employers looking for skilled tradespeople.

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Exploring the Trades

If you’re interested in exploring a career in a skilled trade our office can assist you. Please complete the short registration below to get in touch with us.

Apprenticeship Incentive Grants for Women

Federal Incentive Grants

Earn while you learn.


We Connect Apprentices & Employers

Employers can contact The Office to Advance Women Apprentices NS to get access to the resumes of apprentices from our vast database of qualified workers across the province. When you’re hiring, let us know and we’ll forward resumes from highly-skilled women workers directly to you to speed up and simplify your hiring process. 

*Note: Employer's names are kept confidential unless otherwise specified by the employer. 

who we are

Our Stories

Discover the stories of the tradeswomen and employers supported by the Office to Advance Women Apprentices.



The Nova Scotia Office to Advance Women Apprentices helps women like Kaitlin find the right job in the skilled trades for their future. Connect with the office and learn how we can support you to find your dream job!

Read Her Story



SB TireCraft Enfield needed an apprentice who wanted to learn all aspects of the trade, would value the community, and the integrity of the business. The Office to Advance Women Apprentices matched them with a direct entry apprentice from the corridor community.

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The Office to Advance Women Apprentices works closely with the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency (NSAA) and specifically the Women in Trades (WIT) team.

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Funders & Supporters

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Mainland Nova Scotia Office

1000 Sackville Drive

Lower Sackville, NS B4E 0C2

Emily mAclaren

Project Coordinator

(902) 800-3240 | Ext 2701

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Cape Breton Office

45 Prince Street

Sydney, NS B1P 1C6