Taking steps towards employment | Latest news

Taking steps towards employment

Through its UK Shared Prosperity Fund, People and Skills allocation, Cheshire West and Chester Council will be launching three People and Skills projects on 1 June 2024, aimed at supporting adults and young people across the borough to find employment.

The Council’s Skills and Employment team already deliver a broad range of employment support programmes on behalf of DWP and NHS partners, however, there are still some residents who fall through the cracks and for whom a more bespoke offer is more suitable. The “Defining Futures” programme will have a particular focus on those adults with disabilities, those who find themselves at risk of becoming homeless, people living in our more remote, rural communities or those aged over 50. This offer will act as a pre-cursor for the new national Universal Support programme to be launched later in the year.

A complementary project named People & Skills, will be delivered by Weaver Vale Housing Trust which aims to support residents to get ready for employment – mentally and physically, offering tailored packages of support that are not available elsewhere – whether that is helping individuals to access the gym to improve their fitness, access to an increased level of counselling support or guidance on becoming self-employed.

Sarah Saward, Head of Tenancy and Neighbourhood Sustainability said:

“I am delighted that we have secured funding to deliver this vital service to our Cheshire West & Chester Communities. The People & Skills project will deliver tailored individual support programmes, focussing on specific needs and aspirations.”

The final project aimed at supporting our economically inactive residents, is our “Fresh Start” programme. This project aims to support young people aged 16+ to access employment support leading to quality local jobs. Across Cheshire West, we have seen an increase in the numbers of young people dropping out of education, looking for employment, but due to their age, are not able to access job support until they are 19. This means potentially three years of not feeling valued or engaged in society. This project aims to pilot an employment support model currently used by adults with this younger age group.

Cllr Pardoe, Cabinet Member for Inclusive Economy, Regeneration and Digital Transformation said:

“Cheshire West & Chester Council and its partners are supporting residents to find work, understanding that people who are looking for work often face health conditions and other barriers. These three projects will help people develop skills, confidence and strategies, empowering people to find and sustain work. Through these projects, the Council is working to include more of our residents in the varied and healthy Cheshire West local economy, and to share the benefits of it.”

For more information on the projects, please email:


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