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Dates of existence
Working Women Community Centre (WWCC) was created in June 1974 in Toronto’s West End to help newcomer women with pre-employment and employment counselling. The Centre was specifically created to help women from Portugal, Latin America, the Caribbean, and Africa. The original name of the Centre was Women’s Community Employment Centre.
WWCC has responded to the needs of women in Toronto’s newcomer communities with creative, yet pragmatic, programs and services. In 1978, WWCC sponsored the Working Skills Centre, a mailroom on-the-job training program.
In 1984, WWCC helped develop the South Asian Women’s Centre, providing settlement services to South Asian women in Toronto. From 1985-1989, WWCC partnered with Humber College to offer the Electronics Assembler Program [Immigrant Women Into Electronics], providing immigrant women with skills for entry level electronics positions.
Since 1980, WWCC has provided immigrant women with an English as a Second Language program and a Language Instruction for Newcomers program, as well as offering computer training.
From 1980-1985, WWCC sponsored Modistas Unidas Workshop, an informal collective of skilled Portuguese-speaking dressmakers. This professional dressmaking business created an exclusive high-quality women’s clothing line.
In 2005, WWCC and its partners facilitated the Baker/Patisserie pre-apprenticeship training program. WWCC also partnered with organizations, in 2007, to provide immigrant women with pre-apprenticeship carpentry training.
As of 2014, WWCC serves all newcomer communities across the city, with office locations in the Jane/Finch, Don Mills/Sheppard/Peanut Town, Bloor West, and Victoria Village communities.
Functions, occupations and activities
Working Women Community Centre has provided settlement services to Canadian newcomers and supportive counselling especially as relates to employment and labour issues.
The Centre also has provided extensive language and skills training programs.
In 2008 Working Women Community Centre received the Soroptimist International of Toronto Award for outstanding work to improve the lives of women in Toronto.
In 2007, the Federation of Portuguese Canadian Business and Professionals recognized WWCC for its outstanding professional achievement.
In 2006 Access Equity & Human Rights Award – City of Toronto - recognized WWCC for its work with immigrant women in Toronto.