|Work Programme Success|
Employment Minister Chris Grayling applauds the launch of a Twist Partnership inspired Work Programme project: "I congratulate Jagonari and Twist on this excellent project. It's the result of just the sort of innovative partnership that we wanted the Work Programme to encourage."
"Through our new Work Programme, providers are free to design support that is right for individuals and the local jobs market. Our contracts are designed so that local and voluntary organisations and charities who have expertise on the ground play their part alongside bigger national providers. This hugely impressive project shows that our approach is working well and making a fundamental difference in helping people get the skills they need and employers want." The project: a Healthy Women's Club organised by a group of 25 Bengali women in Whitechapel, all referred by Jobcentre Plus to the Work Programme. They devised a way to get work and experience, contribute to their community and potentially save the NHS hundreds of thousands of pounds a year.
They have worked with The Twist Partnership, which inspires people to tap into their experience and specialist knowledge to find meaningful employment. They've been attending Twist's weekly enterprise sessions at the Jagonari Women’s Educational Resources Centre in Whitechapel and have decided to use their knowledge and skills to help alleviate the health problems and social isolation suffered by many Bengali people in London, particularly the older generation.
As of March 2012, three of the women in this group have already come off Jobseekers’ Allowance to head the project and all the others will use the work experience to train as Community Outreach workers. They've had enthusiastic support from doctors at the Royal London Hospital and the Team Up initiative (run by the London Deanery), which gets Junior Doctors involved in community projects. They've also received a grant from the medical charity London Catalyst.
As a supplier for the Government's Work Programme, The Twist Partnership helps jobseekers into employment. Because of our deep insights into the target audiences, we work with jobseekers with language difficulties including many from refugee and migrant backgrounds.
Twist works with Seetec to deliver the Work Programme in East and South London. In the first six months of the contract more than 500 customers have been referred to us. We have also won two more subcontracts for 2012: working with A4e for East London and the Thames Valley and with Reed in Partnership for the DWP programme for Families with Multiple Barriers.
The Twist Consortium is made up of ten partners: Jagonari Women’s Educational Resource Centre, Croydon Kurdish Centre, Ocean Somali Community Association, Somali Bravanese Welfare Association, Minaret Community Centre, Women’s Refugee Association, Pepys Community Forum, Shpresa Programme and Southwark Somali Refugee Council.
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