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New initiatives will brew up success in the jobs market

North Ayrshire Health and Social Care Partnership has launched two exciting new initiatives aimed at brewing up confidence and promoting employability skills among those who use their Children, Families and Justice Services.

These innovative community projects will help participants who are experiencing ongoing life challenges to access vocational training and gain recognised qualifications, leading to improved employment opportunities and boosting health and wellbeing.

The latest of these projects was launched by Provost Anthea Dickson on Friday 25 November at Ardeer Youth and Community Centre in Stevenston, where staff and guests were invited along to learn more about ‘Changing Room’ – which will see service users involved with NAHSCP’s Justice Services teams learn a range of barista and customer service skills.

While the project was launched in Ardeer, ‘Changing Room’ will be based within the Justice Services offices at Third Avenue in Irvine, with plans to run the initiative as a mini enterprise for the facility in the future.

This event followed the launch of the Hasta Barista project on Friday 4 November during NAHSCP’s first ever Promise Conference at Saltcoats Town Hall, where guests were able to sample some of the delicious drinks produced by young people involved with the Rosemount Project, Throughcare/Aftercare services, the Programme Approach Team and the Child and Adolescent Specialist Substance Team (CASST).

Hasta Barista is based at Meadowcroft in Irvine and allows young people aged from 14 to 26 to achieve an industry recognised certificate in barista skills that will enable them to seek employment in hospitality settings, or even branch out and set up their own successful businesses in the future.

Both projects were set up in partnership with Developing Young Workforce Ayrshire, which was established in 2015 to help support the Scottish Government’s youth employment strategy, with an additional three community schemes currently in the pipeline for North Ayrshire.

One service user currently involved with the Changing Room scheme said: “I’m really pleased to have had this opportunity to attend the barista training and gain my qualification, as this was very much unexpected.

“I’m now feeling more confident in myself and hope that in the near future I can use my new skills to find work within hospitality.”

The initiatives follow on from a series of similar projects that have been running in North Ayrshire schools for a number of years now, offering a diverse range of hands-on learning opportunities for pupils that are supported and funded by partners including DYW Ayrshire, Ayrshire College and Prince’s Trust.

“It is fantastic to see the launch of these two extremely worthwhile schemes within North Ayrshire Health and Social Care Partnership. We are excited to be able to offer these opportunities to those using our services and have been really impressed by the skills on show so far at the launch events.

“The chance to gain industry level qualifications, as well as the boost in confidence that being involved in these projects will bring, will help to remove barriers to employment and increase the number of those involved with our Children, Families and Justice services moving on to positive destinations,” said Councillor Margaret Johnson, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care.

“We look forward to rolling out more these innovative community projects in the future.”

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