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Mayor of West Yorkshire launches ‘learning region’ with £10 million investment



People facing barriers to employment will benefit from over £9.5 million to help them get the skills they need to secure well-paid work.

People facing barriers to employment will benefit from more than £9.5 million to help them gain the skills they need to secure well-paid work.

Fresh from her re-election as Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin has announced the £10 million package to “make life easier for those who find it hardest”.

This funding will help people who struggle to secure good jobs due to their age, health status, disability or difficult personal circumstances.

It follows a high-profile election promise to build a “region of learning and creativity” for all, where everyone in the region will be urged to follow their passions in life, and lifted up to reach their full potential.

Those who will benefit from six new projects include single parents, people with low digital skills, people who have faced discrimination because of their ethnicity, and people with criminal convictions.

Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, said: “Too many people are at a disadvantage when it comes to finding and keeping work, so I’m pleased to be getting these new initiatives off the ground as part of our focus on a region with learning.

“I want everyone in West Yorkshire to have the skills and opportunities they need to succeed, whatever their personal circumstances.

“Providing people with tailored support to break down the barriers they face will help us grow our economy and build a stronger, brighter West Yorkshire that works for everyone.”

The six new initiatives, part-funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund, aim to reduce inequality, raise living standards and grow the economy, while boosting confidence, skills and knowledge in enhance the communities of West Yorkshire.

The projects are:

  • An innovative pilot between Bradford Council and local community and outpatient health services, supporting stroke patients, will receive extra rehabilitation for those with long COVID-19 to help them return to work, while the businesses for which they will receive tailor-made support to better facilitate their return to the labor market. workplace.
  • Stepping Stones, an initiative that will provide free access to much-loved ‘community shops’ in Leeds, Bradford and Wakefield. Once there, people can purchase discounted food and groceries, as well as access subsidies to pay for expenses like travel and childcare, while undertaking a support program designed to help them return to work in a humane way.
  • Grants will be available for voluntary and community organizations to tap into their extensive local knowledge and relationships with vulnerable people, to ensure support reaches those who need it most.
  • Two projects are being launched by The Education Development Trust: Future Forward, aimed at supporting 16-24 year olds to find work or further education, and a ‘Work and Health Programme’ which aims to break health barriers to employment .
  • Kirklees Council’s project will help people facing health-related barriers to employment, through specialist training for frontline staff.

Learn more about business and skills in West Yorkshireor find a course.