A series of events is taking place across East Wales over the next month to provide organisations with details of a new multi-million pound European funding scheme aimed at tackling poverty, social exclusion and unemployment.
The Active Inclusion Fund will provide skills training and other support for economically-inactive, along with subsidised work placements.
Initially operating in West Wales and the Valleys and for people aged over 25, the programme is being extended to the East Wales region – Flintshire, Powys, Monmouthshire, Newport, Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan.
Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA) is running Introducing Active Inclusion information events from 27 July to 6 August at eight venues from Barry to Wrexham.
The fund is targeted at people designated economically inactive and long term unemployed people, with ‘complex barriers’ to employment. These include people with low skills, with a work-limiting health condition, caring responsibilities, who are over 54 years old, from a jobless household and Black, Asian, and minority ethnic.
The scheme will offer two strands of support to help them gain qualifications and skills, undertake job searches, progress to further education and/or training, and achieve supported employment or full time sustainable employment.
The first strand, ‘Include’, will focus on people furthest from the labour market and act as a first step in their journey to employment, providing a range of support such as vocational and basic skills training, volunteering, money management and social skills.
The second strand, ‘Achieve’, will offer paid supported employment opportunities for up to 35 hours per week for 26 weeks, with participants paid at least the National Minimum Wage. Activities will include essential skills training, work experience, financial management training and job search.
‘Both strands will lead to participants achieving both part and full accredited qualifications, increasing their confidence and motivation and encouraging them to go on to volunteering, further learning, supported employment and full time employment,’ said WCVA Chief Executive, Ruth Marks.
‘Our information events will take place in the mornings and explain exactly what the fund aims to do, what activities it can support and how people can apply,’ she added. ‘WCVA officers will be making presentations and answering any questions.’
Introducing Active Inclusion Information events are as follows:
• 27 July –Cardiff
• 28 July – Newtown
• 29 July – Brecon
• 30 July – Caia Park
• 31 July – Monmouth
• 3 August – Flint
• 4 August – Newport
• 6 August – Barry