Wednesday 16 August 2017 02:18:17 PM

Down Business Centre Launches New Free Employment Programme To Create Jobs And Promote New Businesses
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AN initiative to help reduce unemployment in Down District has been launched by Down Business Centre, the area’s business-start support agency.

The centre is running a free programme to help those currently out of work to identify what they need to do to get back into employment or alternatively to look at ways of becoming self-employed through taking a business idea to the next stage.

Under the banner title of ‘Exploring Enterprise 2’ the programme will provide accredited training and mentoring covering all aspects of starting up a business. Participants, however, do not need to have a specific business idea to join – the key aim is to improve the employability of participants in areas such as CV writing or interview skills, as well as business planning.

The project is part-financed by the European Social Fund, the Department for Employment and Learning, Enterprise Northern Ireland and the Local Enterprise Agencies under the Northern Ireland ESF Programme 2007 -13.

To be eligible for the programme, participants must currently be over 16 and unemployed, and they must able to commit to two weeks of training. The activities will be held at the Business Centre’s premises at Down Business Park in Downpatrick.

Down Business Centre has launched the Exploring Enterprise 2 job and business creation programme.

The key benefits to participants are that the programme is:

*  Completely FREE

*  Will provide a qualification – QCF level 2 in Understanding Business Enterprise (CCEA)

*  Will help them meet new people; and

*  Will give them new skills to enter self-employment/employment

The programme involves up to three hours of pre-assessment mentoring and more than twelve hours of individually-tailored support. There will also be seven half-day training sessions. It will be managed locally by Joan Tummon who can be contacted at Down Business Centre (028 44 616416) or by email at:

[email protected]

Councillor Clarke who is also a Board Director member at the area’s business start up agency in Downpatrick believes the free programme to help those currently out of work will help people get back into employment or become self employed.

Board Member Welcomes The new Initiative

Councillor Patrick Clarke said, “Down Business Centre is an important economic hub to Down District and provides much needed support and assistance to people who are considering becoming self employed and moving a business idea to a new level.

“Down Business Centre is running a free programme ‘Exploring Enterprise 2’ to help people unemployed and out of work to get back into employment or consider looking at ways of becoming self-employed through taking a business idea to the next stage.

“The programme will provide accredited training and mentoring covering all aspects of starting up a business. As a Board member of the Centre I am well aware of the present economic climate we are currently experiencing across Northern Ireland and the high level of unemployment that is presently facing many people in Down District.

“This new initiative launched by Down Business Centre is a free programme that helps identify people’s needs in getting back into employment or taking a new business idea to the next level and hopefully into a business start up.

“I would actively encourage any person who is over sixteen and presently unemployed and who is willing to commit to two weeks of training to consider applying to the free programme at the Down Business Centre which will also provide a QCF level 2 qualification,” added Cllr Clarke.