Thousands of disadvantaged people and long-term jobseekers in the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough area are set to receive specialist tailored advice and support to get into work.
Up to £5m will be provided by the Department for Work & Pensions for the ‘Health and Care Sector Progression Academy’. This will help train those outside the sector to gain employment in it, and help those already working in the sector to progress.
Developed and delivered by Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority in partnership with the Government, the scheme will help train around 2,100 people – including disabled people and older people – to secure and progress in a variety of occupations in the health and care sector.
Secretary of State for Work & Pensions, David Gauke said:
“We have record numbers of people in work which is great news, but there are still people missing out on the available opportunities because of barriers to employment.
“The new Health and Care Sector Academy will help to train more talented people into the social care profession, and increase this good practice across the country.
“This pilot is yet another step forward in our efforts to help people of all backgrounds enjoy the benefits of work, and will boost the wide ranging support we currently offer through local experts like Jobcentre Plus.”
Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sajid Javid added:
“As part of the devolution revolution we’ve handed swathes of power and significant investment to help boost jobs and growth across the country.
"Now we’re going even further to support six areas with devolution deals by working with the new combined authority mayors to pilot innovative employment schemes.
“These pilots will trial new approaches to help the most disadvantaged people in our society to get the security of a good job and a regular pay packet, helping to build a country that works for everyone.”
Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, James Palmer, said:
“This is a prime example of the benefits Cambridgeshire and Peterborough will receive because of our devolution deal with Central Government. The additional £5.2m is set to create 600 new apprenticeships, providing us with an opportunity to upskill local people whilst supporting the Health and Care industry. I am excited to see this pilot develop and help us make a difference in the county.”
Combined Authority Portfolio Holder for Employment and Skills and leader of Fenland District Council, John Clark said: “Devolution has already unlocked millions of pounds for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough for housing and transport, and now it is helping to us to address areas of deprivation with employment support for thousands of people. This pilot will help tackle a shortage of skilled workers in the health and care sector to meet current and future labour demands and reduce the reliance on work-related benefits, giving better security in employment and improving career and pay prospects.”
These new pilots were agreed with six combined authority areas as part of ground-breaking devolution deals and the Government’s plan to hand new funding and powers back to local areas across the country. These schemes are aimed at boosting growth and jobs by working with the new combined authority mayors.