LBHF gets ESF cash for skills programme

LB Hammersmith & Fulham has announced a new £2m scheme to help get people in to work.

The European Social Fund (ESF) has agreed to match fund a £1m award from Hammersmith & Fulham Council which will see a partnership led by Ealing, Hammersmith & West London College focus on practical support for residents out of work. The council says the scheme will have a particular emphasis on the borough’s most deprived areas.

The partnership includes 15 organisations that all have ‘on the ground’ knowledge of the needs of specific job seekers. These include Groundwork, The Prince’s Trust, Action Acton, SPEAR, London Skills Academy and Hammersmith & Fulham Volunteer Centre.

The scheme will provide jobseekers with a tailored package of skills, training, mentoring, coaching, employment support and work experience which also offers initial support once a job is secured.

Cllr Nicholas Botterill, Leader of Hammersmith & Fulham Council, said: “Working is more than earning a wage to pay the bills, it is also the bedrock of a successful and happy life. We want to help all residents to find employment and this scheme will embrace the expertise of local people and the voluntary sector to improve employment levels in some of our most deprived areas.”

The scheme, known as RAISE, (Raising Aspiration and Inspiring Success in Employment), will target some of the most disadvantaged people in deprived wards in the borough such as Askew, College Park, Old Oak, Wormholt and White City.

This will include a focus on housing estates such as White City, Clem Atlee and Edward Woods. These estates all have more than 40 per cent of households earning less than £20,000 per year.

Major employers such as Westfield will also be involved in the wider partnership to make vacancies available to local residents.

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