Propeller Project

At Toronto Pearson, we want to have a positive impact in the communities around us. That is why we invest in community-building initiatives through the Propeller Project, our community investment program. 

In recent years, Canadian governments have worked to make Canada’s skilled labour pool more competitive to support economic growth. Ensuring their skills are effectively utilized and allocated by employers is imperative to our country’s future prosperity. When a person is employed below their individual level of skill, professional experience and/or education, the economy is at risk of misusing valuable resources. These instances of labour misallocation represent examples of “underemployment.” 

Underemployment is a critical social issue that is often not well understood. Those facing underemployment can come from a diverse range of backgrounds and circumstances, from newcomers to Canada whose credentials may not be recognized, to young adults with post-secondary education who are lacking professional networks and opportunities to break into their sector. Underemployment impacts many people living in our region and is a barrier to shared economic prosperity. 

As a major employer in the region, we are well positioned to be a champion in addressing the issue of underemployment by building partnerships with employers, community non-profit organizations and research, academic and labour groups to find regional solutions. To help us achieve this vision, we have committed $1 million to tackle the issue of underemployment across Brampton, Etobicoke and Mississauga.

We have collaborated with Deloitte on a whitepaper to explore the causes and consequences of underemployment in Canada. 

The paper was commissioned to proactively generate ideas for policy and programs and help focus strategic priorities for Toronto Pearson’s community investment program in 2019. The findings of the whitepaper helped set stronger guidelines and clear funding priorities for the Propeller Project during our call for proposals for the Uplift Fund. In December of 2019, we invited organizations to submit expressions of interest for projects that will accomplish one or more of these five goals:  

  1. Facilitate engagement, collaboration and interventions with employers to develop programs that integrate workers and maximize the use of their skills to generate benefits for both groups. 
  2. Enhance wraparound support services and in-demand skills training in employment programs to ensure that people successfully integrate into the labour market. 
  3. Conduct new research and track local underemployment to better understand the scope and scale of the problem, barriers, target populations as well as opportunities for improvement and impacts. 
  4. Implement initiatives to achieve sustainable employment outcomes with individuals or groups experiencing underemployment, matching their talent with job requirements and helping them advance in their career paths. 
  5. Develop strategies to educate and/or advocate for policies and programs to tackle underemployment together with policy makers, elected officials, private institutions, labour groups or post-secondary institutions. 

Thank you to all those who applied and presented their proposals for consideration. 

Nest Fund

The Nest Fund supports programs and organizations that have a positive impact on communities surrounding Toronto Pearson. This funding stream assists a select number of initiatives in local neighbourhoods that create stronger, healthier and happier communities.

Please note that the Nest Fund is not accepting applications at the moment.   

Toronto Pearson Workforce Development

The Propeller Project is also working with community partners to support initiatives and projects that seek to directly engage or involve workers employed at Toronto Pearson to support them in career development, training, job placement, employment counselling services. To learn more about our first ever airport workforce survey, see our Workforce Survey page.

Contact us

For questions about Toronto Pearson Community Investment and the Propeller Project, please contact

Share this page