Cwm Taf University Health Board is participating in a Welsh Government programme which aims to help local people into training and employment.
LIFT is an ambitious programme to provide, by the end of 2017, 5,000 training and employment opportunities for people living in households where no-one is in work. The programme is not aimed at those who are temporarily out of work but will focus on those who have spent more than six months out of work or training and who face the greatest barriers to becoming employable, such as young single parents, adults with few or no formal qualifications; people with poor employment records and individuals with disabilities. Research shows that people in households with these characteristics are much less likely to gain employment than others.
The programme is being piloted in eight Communities First Cluster areas throughout Wales, including Gilfach Goch and Tonyrefail which are within the catchment area of Cwm Taf.
The Health Board has been identified as a valued partner in helping LIFT to improve the lives of local people by empowering them to overcome personal barriers and take up training or employment opportunities.
Cwm Taf already works closely with Rhondda Cynon Taf local authority to offer work experience to unemployed local people through its Pre-Employment programme and LIFT participants will now be offered the same opportunities to experience work within a healthcare setting.
Mark Gibbs, the Health Board’s Learning & Development Manager said: “Cwm Taf have always supported local unemployed people through the provision of work experience placements.
“Participation in the LIFT project will ensure that in the future, these placements will be offered to those members of our local community who are even further away from the jobs market.”
Tackling poverty is a top priority for the Welsh Government. The LIFT programme is a key part of their Tackling Poverty Action Plan and will improve the lives of some of our most vulnerable people by helping them into training or employment opportunities.
In each pilot area, a LIFT employment brokers will make contact with local public sector organisations and businesses to identify training, work experience or employment opportunities for programme participants. The employment brokers will also identify local people from workless households who could benefit from the programme. They will identify reasons why a person may not be in work, such as a lack of qualifications or health issues, and work with that person to overcome those barriers to take up the training, work experience or employment opportunities. Each person taking part will have personal development plans to monitor their progress and adapt the help they are getting if needed.