29/11/2011

Jobs Creation In Focus At Seminar

Job creation was in focus this week with news that the Stormont Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland has supported an Invest Northern Ireland Jobs Fund initiative.

It was held at a joint seminar in Mossley Mill, Newtownabbey.

Alongside measures to support companies to create jobs, Invest NI's Jobs Fund, launched in April of this year, includes increased support across the Social Enterprise sector, grants for new business starts for individuals who are resident in deprived areas, known as Neighbourhood Renewal Areas, and grants to young people aged 16-24 not in education, training or employment.

DUP Minister McCausland (pictured) said: "It is widely accepted that worklessness is the single greatest contributor to poverty, including child poverty.

"For the vast majority of people who can work, being in employment is the best possible option for escaping poverty and being able to play a full role in society.

"Initiatives like the Jobs Fund give everyone the opportunity and support necessary, to participate in our economy. If we are to successfully tackle poverty, we must maximise the potential for disadvantaged families, to benefit from future economic growth," he said.
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The audience for the event included representatives of Neighbourhood Renewal Partnerships from each of the 36 Neighbourhood Renewal Areas across Northern Ireland. Invest NI is promoting the Jobs Fund to a wide range of stakeholders and businesses across Northern Ireland.

The seminar aimed to encourage the representatives of the Neighbourhood Renewal Partnerships to help promote the initiative in their areas.

Bill Scott, Invest NI's Director of Regional Economic Development, said: "This event is an important opportunity to emphasise the benefits that the Jobs Fund can offer to residents of Neighbourhood Renewal Areas and to young people not in employment, education or training.

"In order to address the economic development issues in these local communities effectively, it is essential that a collaborative approach be undertaken to dissolve the barriers to employment and ensure everyone can make a contribution towards growing our economy."

The Department for Social Development leads on the Northern Ireland Executive’s Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy. The strategy includes Economic Renewal as one of four interlinking strategic objectives and recognises that developing economic activity in the most deprived areas is one of the best ways of tackling poverty and disadvantage.

(BMcC)

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