North Somerset Council has announced that 16 women who were previously struggling to get back into work following maternity, have graduated from their free programme of support.
The first programme of its kind in the UK, the Women’s Work Lab is a community interest company that looks to provide support to women that out of work and in receipt of Universal Credit by building confidence, new skills and providing a supportive peer group.
With the combination of face to face expert training and formal work placement opportunities with respected local employers, the programme is 12 weeks long. Once over, participants will receive support from a mentor, as well as ongoing career coaching from the Women’s Work Lab.
North Somerset Council’s Executive Member for Lifelong Learning, Cllr Catherine Gibbons, said:
“I’m delighted that the Women’s Work Lab project is going from strength to strength in North Somerset. It’s a truly worthwhile initiative, helping to break down barriers that many women experience when returning to the workplace after having children.
“I was so pleased to be able to attend the graduation ceremony on Friday and personally congratulate everyone who successfully completed the course.
“I encourage eligible women to apply to the next cohort in Weston. I also hope to see more businesses registering to provide work experience opportunities.”
As the third cohort beginning training at the end of April 2023, the Women’s Work Lab are also looking to hear form businesses in the local area who would be interested in hosting participants on placement.
North Somerset Council is supporting the scheme through the Department of Work and Pensions’ Flexible Support Funding.