Address Worklessness | Skills | Cumbria LEP
address worklessness

Skills

Address Worklessness and Youth Unemployment

There is real opportunity to better engage with those workless households and communities that are not fully engaged with the labour market. Initial modelling has suggested that in principle raising employment rates in the worst employability cold spots in Cumbria could add around 4,500 to the workforce – helping address the labour availability challenge.

This requires both working with the individuals and communities who are currently remote from the labour market to try and ensure that they retain to the labour market and that all of our young people enter and remain in the world of work and/or education/training.

We need to develop a more coherent employability and social inclusion offer to lead to a successful, fuller working life. However, such action is not simply a matter of well-designed employment programmes, although they have a part to play. It requires co-ordination action across a wide range of agencies at a local and even community level.

There is an important role for Cumbria’s thriving voluntary and social enterprise sector to play in developing and delivering new solutions to this challenge.

Current key actions for Cumbria LEP’s People, Employment and Skills Strategy Group are to:

  • Map the existing skills offer and identify gaps
  • Develop an escalator model of support
  • Ensure that flexibilities in skills funding are fully influenced by the LEP, understood by employers and utilised by providers to meet identified needs

CASE STUDY: Inspira

Cumbria LEP has allocated almost £5M of Education and Skills Funding to careers management and personal development organisation Inspira from November 2016 – March 2021.

The LEP-supported programmes have focused on assisting young people and adults into employment, and reflect the flexibilities required of skills delivery across the county focusing on high quality advice and guidance, coaching and support, accredited learning and non-regulated learning at a time and place to suit learners’ needs.

These programmes have helped Cumbria maintain a very low Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET) rate, and helped over 2,000 young people and adults gain the skills they need to progress into employment.

The successes of these programme will continue to inform the development of plans and strategies to address the challenges set out in the Local Industrial Strategy.

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