By Alison Smith
As we progress through the busy 2023 summer building season, your BCA staff enjoys the opportunity of reaching out to you, the membership, with an update on what we have been working on over the past year. In short, it has been a busy period, we have been focused on not only meeting, but exceeding member’s expectations. We are constantly striving to enhance our education offerings, connect on a regular basis with our public procurement partners and we are laser-focused on promoting skilled trades as a rewarding career option. We continue to support our community with various fundraising activities and we provide member’s networking options with numerous social events. Supporting all of these efforts, I must acknowledge the hard work of your BCA team, Alicia Blow and Bryony Buchanan.
Please note the following highlights of our efforts in Skilled Trades, Education, Networking and Member Care:
Recently I had the privilege of escorting Simcoe County guidance teachers through construction sites in our region.
The aim of this excursion was to expose these academic leaders to what a career in the skilled trades would actually look like – the number one complaint of BCA members is the lack of skilled workers.
Teachers were provided with full personal protective equipment had on-site safety training prior to the start of their visits. They were provided with additional learning by industry experts on hand throughout the day to explain the benefits of choosing construction as a career.
Feedback from the day was incredible!
” I wanted to thank you for the excellent tour yesterday. I felt the information provided was extremely valuable and the community partners were fantastic”
“Thank you so much for organizing the visits yesterday. I really appreciate the time it took you to coordinate that event. It was great to meet and speak to the many individuals involved”
“Thank you again for the great event that you have offered the teaching team at the SCDSB. I greatly enjoyed learning from you and the BCA team members. No doubt this experience will help me in guiding and supporting my students. I look forward to working with you in the future, should I require some support in placing some students in the trades”
We would like to thank both the BCA and SCHCA board for their assistance in planning and executing the site tours, our civil site host – Mar-King Construction, our ICI host J D Builders, both the Simcoe County District and Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Boards and the many volunteers that made the day as impactful as it was.
The BCA encourages all members to engage with local school boards and colleges and to recruit co-operative education students and apprentices. This is a way ensuring the future of a skilled trades workforce in Simcoe County.
There are multiple benefits to employers wishing to hire students including rebates from various sources – resources can be found on the Skilled Trades section of the BCA website.
- BCA has a busy training schedule and members are taking full advantage of the competitively priced safety training, industry standards courses and the always popular Lunch & Learns. Industry experts have presented on Excess Soils, Prompt Payment, Construction Insurance Specifications in Contracts & Bonding, Financing Properties, Harm Reduction Training, Naloxone Obligations and Working with Defence Construction. All our Lunch & Learns are FREE for BCA members! Watch your inbox for upcoming sessions on Working with the City of Barrie & Georgian College and so much more!
- The BCA is your source to purchase all CCA and CCDC documents and seals. You can order on-line from our website or call the office. We are your one stop source for construction related materials such as Green Books and Site Signage.
We hosted our Annual General Meeting with a Casino Night at Tangle Creek. Members joined in as your President, Blair Chalmers conducted the AGM business portion and inducted the newly elected president, Jeanne Kempffer of Burling Ranger Company Inc. Deserving students who are entering the trades were awarded the Jordan Abercrombie Bursary.
Hockey was back and there was some fierce competition. The tournament is based on a point scoring calculation, and as we had a tie for points, the deciding factor is based on the lowest amount of penalty minutes accumulated. Wallwin Electric Services was the victor – taking the trophy to display at their office!
We have been having a blast at our BCA Family Days! Members can register themselves and their families for free. So far this year we have been able to meet member families at the Funvilla indoor playground and at the Sugar Shack at Drysdale’s Tree Farm with a portion of the entry fees being donated to Camphill Communities – upcoming events include the Elmvale Zoo and Round Ranch’s Pumpkin Patch.
Pub Night is a great opportunity to reconnect members with members and we enjoyed the always fun atmosphere at the Queens Hotel.
Who doesn’t love the BCA spring golf tournament!?! Another great event where members can relax and network at the same time. We were fortunate to be able to return to our scramble format – a huge favourite of the participants.
The Rowdy Ride had motorcycles touring throughout the Kawartha Lake District this year. A fantastic committee organized prizes, a lunch at The Square Plates restaurant and raised over $7 000 for the local chapter of the Canadian Mental Health Association – funds are targeted directly to youth in need of support!!
On September 14th we will be firing up the grill for our Member Appreciation BBQ. Join us in the festivities along with local school boards and students.
Our Women in Construction and Young Leaders groups continue to grow. Regular meetings connect individuals to foster the development of skills and relationships. Both groups are open for members to join.
BCA members can take advantage of many special discounts through our affinity program. Savings can be had on insurance, fuel, accommodations, business forms and much, much more. We are adding additional affinity partners regularly so be sure to check often to see all the great offerings – details can be found on the BCA website.
Each year we update and publish our Member Directory. This useful tool guides the buyers of construction directly to YOU. Copies are distributed hot-off-the-press to all local procurement staff.
Another useful tool for those looking to buy what you sell is our website. The on-line directory with alpha and divisional search capability means that your products and services are at the fingertips of local buyers. FREE to all members is the details section…send us your company history or project portfolio and we will add it to your listing.
Access to industry forms such as substantial completion forms, CCDC 9A and B, health and safety checklists etc. can be found at the ‘Industry Tools’ button on the BCA home page.
Don’t forget to connect! Find current news and comments on Facebook and Twitter.
In terms of our 2023 Board of Directors, you will find 12 very committed men and women representing the membership. This dedicated group were chosen by the membership and are extremely engaged with the BCA, the various committees they serve on, and it has been a distinct privilege to serve with this fine group of people from industry – they generously share their knowledge and passion of the industry
I look forward to seeing everyone at upcoming events, and please feel free to drop by the BCA for a visit with the team at any time.