Fight redundancy with training grants

PEOPLE in Comet country who have been made redundant are to benefit from �6 million of training grants awarded in the East of England to help individuals get back into employment. The Response to Redundancy initiative is funded by the Learning and Skills

PEOPLE in Comet country who have been made redundant are to benefit from �6 million of training grants awarded in the East of England to help individuals get back into employment.

The Response to Redundancy initiative is funded by the Learning and Skills Council and the European Social Fund to help people train for new careers following redundancy.

The Consultancy Home Counties is leading the project and Pitman Training Stevenage has been awarded an associate consultancy contract to deliver training and employability support for learners, allowing learners to benefit from up to �1,500 worth of Pitman Training and Learndirect courses.

It is the first time people in Hertfordshire who have recently become unemployed, either by way of redundancy or any other circumstance listed below, can access free training.


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The grants are available to anyone in Hertfordshire over the age of 18 years, who:

* Has been unemployed for less than 6 months.

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* Is under notice or threat of redundancy

* Has been made redundant within the last 3 months

Individuals are entitled to:

* An advice session which looks at current skills and training needs

* An individual learning plan

* The option to choose from over 100 Pitman Training and Learndirect courses including business, financial, ICT, secretarial, literacy, numeracy, IT and management courses

* The option to choose employability skills training which covers interview techniques, application form and CV writing tips.

Pitman Training offers flexible training that can be studied online or at a centre with no set date for completion, allowing people who have been given notice of redundancy to start training straight away.

Mehul Shah, director of Pitman Training Stevenage, welcomes the funding, saying: "This is a real boost to people living in Hertfordshire when they need it most. Money is often the first worry when people are made redundant and the Response to Redundancy initiative is fantastic as it enables people to upgrade their skills for free.

"We hope the training will help get people back into work as quickly as possible and we have strong links with recruitment agencies to take advantage of emerging opportunities and careers advice.

"I have witnessed an 80 per cent increase in the number of individuals looking to start training courses over the last month which shows that people are realising the benefits of training during a recession.''

Rose Lavin, operations director at The Consultancy Home Counties, said: "It is crucial to raise awareness of projects like Response to Redundancy. It gives people a real opportunity to refresh their skills and maybe take a different direction in their working lives.

"It is important for people to know that there is support out there for them during tough times. We have already had much success with our other projects that help people find rewarding new work and this funding is a welcome addition to our overall offer.

"With our support network of high quality training providers, such as Pitman Training, I know we can help people across the region get the training they need to get back into work quickly."

People who are interested in accessing the free Response to Redundancy training can contact Mehul Shah on 01438 747424 or call into the Pitman Training Centre in Park Place, Stevenage.

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