ColegauCymru is pleased to announce funding of £300k for the Further Education sector from the Welsh Government’s EU Transition Fund. The funding will support three distinct projects that address the varied and changing needs of communities in Wales. Each project will enable all colleges in Wales to learn and share from the pilots and offer new routes into re-skilling, training and continuation in vocational education.
Brexit, and wider changes in industrial and business process, pose new and unexpected challenges to these communities. This funding will enable three Further Education Institutions (FEIs), as community anchor institutions, to respond to these challenges through the provision and delivery of innovative and flexible adult education.
Coleg Cambria, Bridgend College and Coleg Sir Gâr/Coleg Ceredigion will be the locations of the pilot projects. Each college is located in one of the three Regional Skills Partnership (RSP) areas and the needs of each region, as identified in the RSP plans, have been a key reference point for the colleges’ projects.
Alongside economic challenges, the projects will address changes in social patterns that inhibit participation in adult learning. Therefore, the training and support that the colleges offer will need to be both flexible and inclusive and take into account the personal circumstances of, and the issues faced, by adult learners such as childcare & elderly care commitments and the balancing of study alongside part time work.
Bridgend College will be targeting those at risk of redundancy in the motor vehicle industry by up-skilling trained mechanics in the maintenance of electric vehicles. Coleg Sir Gâr/Coleg Ceredigion will be tailoring its project to tackle the challenges faced by those in rural areas to access entrepreneurship training and Coleg Cambria has linked its project to the priority sectors of advanced manufacturing and digital skills in North East Wales.
Kirsty Williams, Minister for Education, said:
“Through the Welsh Government’s EU Transition Fund, I am pleased we’re able to support the three colleges to help local people gain new skills and qualifications, which can widen people’s job options or could even be the springboard to a new career.
“Lifelong learning is one of the priorities in the progressive agreement between myself and the First Minister and this programme is an example of our further education sector supporting people to develop new skills to meet technological changes and the challenges posed by Brexit.”