The European Social Fund (ESF) is a fund that invests in people, with a focus on improving employment and education opportunities across the European Union. It also aims to improve the situation of the most vulnerable people at risk of poverty. Worcestershire County Council is launching a targeted ESF Community Grants Programme in response to COVID 19. Round 5 seeks applications from any third sector organisations and small organisations from the private sector, throughout Worcestershire, who are ready to reach out by using approaches which tackle the new and emerging barriers arising from the impact of COVID 19. The Programme is focusing on projects that deliver digital skills, support with mental health and unemployment due to Covid-19. Small grants (up to ?20,000) will be made available for the purpose of developing and maintaining participant connections to learning experiences. Project activity should support, maintain and improve participant employability and resilience. All project activity must be within the current government COVID restrictions but should include flexibility to adapt as and when those restrictions change in future months. These grants will be awarded to organisations who will deliver projects aligned to Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership's (WLEP) vision and priorities. Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership's (LEP) vision is to build a connected, creative and dynamic economy that delivers increased prosperity for all those who choose to live, work and invest in Worcestershire. Worcestershire LEP, through the Worcestershire Employment & Skills Board, has identified a number of priorities in relation to employment and skills in the county: 1. Responding to the emerging barriers arising from the impact of COVID 19 focussing on projects that deliver digital skills, support mental health and unemployment due to COVID 19. 2. Skills and workforce planning: In particular, increasing the number of Apprenticeships (especially at levels 3 and 4), developing graduate level opportunities and increasing private sector skills investment. 3. Strengthening the relationship between education and business: With Worcestershire Employment & Skills Board, we have developed an initiative for Worcestershire's high schools to work more closely with businesses, particularly in relation to work experience opportunities. See the new web portal for more information. 4. Increasing employability: We are committed to improving the employment prospects of young people and a number of initiatives have been identified through the Employment and Skills Board. Projects funded by such Community Grants can deliver a wide range of activities including, but not limited to: o First contact engagement activities that benefit Participants who are not normally in contact with official organisations, such as the DWP. o Projects to improve confidence, motivation and social integration such as spo...
Published: 7 Aug 2020, Receipt by: 4 Sep 2020
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