Three Inverclyde projects have secured more than £800,000 to help develop skills and boost employment opportunities.
The initiatives, Project Neptune, Steps 2 Progression and West Care Academy, were put forward by the council for a share of the UK Government’s £200 million Community Renewal Fund. In total, Inverclyde has secured £830k for all three.
Project Neptune has been awarded £306k towards boosting the marine and tourism economy by equipping local people with skills to work in the sector, supporting the development of businesses, and providing opportunities for residents to create new enterprises.
A similar amount will go to the council’s Steps 2 Progression programme aimed at helping 200 Inverclyde residents aged 16-24 who are unemployed and who live in the most deprived areas into work while almost £218k has been awarded to West Care Academy, a skills innovation scheme being led by West College Scotland to enable local people to enter the care sector.
Councillor Stephen McCabe, leader of Inverclyde Council, said:
“These are three fantastic initiatives aimed at boosting business and employment here in Inverclyde for the benefit of our residents and the local economy.
“We are showing with our Inverclyde Works campaign real ambition and action to create opportunities and break down barriers to employment.
“That, in turn, improves people’s life chances and supports local businesses and organisations.”
Inverclyde was identified as a priority area for financial support from the new UK Community Renewal Fund.
Organisations were invited to bid for funding earlier this year by submitting plans to the council taking into account local priorities, including repopulation, addressing inequalities and improving the environment to create a better place to live, work and visit.
Applications were then assessed by the local authority and seven in total were shortlisted and put forward for consideration by the government.
Councillor McCabe said:
“We submitted seven strong bids for funding and while only three were chosen I’d like to thank all applicants for taking part and wish them every success in the future.”
Three projects have now secured funding:
Project Neptune – £306,400: The project aims to transform the vital economic asset of Inverclyde, the marine economy, through equipping local people with the skills to enter marine and tourism jobs, build the digital capability of local tourism businesses, support marine businesses to collaborate to develop circular economies and help local people create new enterprises. A partnership project between West College Scotland, Inverclyde Trust, Verdancy Group, Travel Tech for Scotland, Inverclyde Chamber of Commerce and University West of Scotland.
Steps 2 Progression – £306,000: To reach out to 200 Inverclyde residents who are 16-24-year-olds, who are ‘not known’ or ‘economically inactive’, who live in the highest 10% of the Scottish Multiple Index of Deprivation and support them through an intensive programme of identifying barriers to employment, creating an action plan to progress the individuals onto their choice of employment pathway. By working more closely with the young people the team will be better placed to meet their needs, they will be better supported and empowered to continue their employability journey.
West Care Academy – £217,784: An integrated skills innovation programme aimed at enabling local people to enter the Care sector, release local Care workers to develop their skills and build the collaboration, innovation and leadership capability of local Care businesses to meet the challenges of a post-pandemic society.
For more information about job opportunities and support for businesses in Inverclyde, click here and look out for the #InverclydeWorks hashtag on social media.