ESF and Luton Borough Council Employment Support for the Over 50s 2012-14

logo-esf fundedThe Over 50’s programme was delivered between November 2012 and January 2014, offering a comprehensive package of employability support to workless adults aged over 50 living in Luton.

Personal advisors supported participants to identify options for future employment via 1 to 1 and group sessions using diagnostics and Luton specific Labour Market information.

logo-LBC1To be eligible for the programme participants needed to be unemployed and actively seeking employment, not already engaged in a DWP Work Programme, over 50 and a UK resident living in the Luton Unitary Area.

The Learning Partnership had overall responsibility for the programme and delivered it alongside its partners: Berries Employment, Kennedy Scott and Step by Step Training.

All project outputs were met and overachieved:

  • 129% participant enrolments onto the programme
  • 115% sustained job outcomes
  • 102% demonstrable record of achievement

Additionally 104% more job outcomes were achieved.

A key success factors in the delivery of the programme was the person centred approach ensuring that all necessary support was made available and individual needs met through mechanisms such as the Work Club.

Work Club sessions were run weekly at the Luton Irish Forum with a wide range of local vacancies carefully selected for the particular client group, including supported digital job search and group sessions as well as networking to boost clients’ confidence and determination to find work and learn new skills.

Training was delivered in CV writing, Interview Techniques, Application Forms and Job Search equipping participants with necessary knowledge and skills around the current recruitment process and local labour market.
Where appropriate participants  were signposted to sector specific training and re-training to meet their individual needs.

All completing participants managed to develop or improve their IT skills, boost their confidence by regular networking with job seekers of the same age group during Work Club and more than half of participants secured sustained employment, overcoming ageism stereotypes and challenging their own barriers to work.

The project was featured in issue ESF Newsletter – Issue 44 and you can read some of the excellent comments from participants below.

Coordinator & Contact

Ewa Depka
T: 01234  857661

Partners on this Project

Participant Feedback

‘The Learning Partnership was very helpful in that you didn’t feel quite so alone in looking for a job.  Everyone is in the same boat, same age etc. Jane and Ewa were always helpful, in their advice and allowing us to call or book appointments at any time if we needed help in specific areas. I didn’t feel very confident in finding a job until I started attending the club.  It gave me hope and optimism.’ (female aged 52, who found two part time jobs fitting around her care responsibilities)

“I thought this was a very helpful organisation.  I picked up some good pointers on how to apply for a job – although I do have a computer at home for those who don’t it would be a great help.” (male aged 61, made redundant after 22 years in the same profession)

“The programme has really helped me a lot.  My instructors are so nice to me, patience in explanation.  My regards goes to my advisor Miss Jane Sandford who was really good to me in all things which made me get employment.”  (male aged 52, who found a new job as a fork lift driver)

“I found Jane very helpful and understanding.  She kept in contact with me through emails after I found part time employment.” (male aged 58, who secured employment at the Luton Airport)

“Wasn’t on programme very long, but I felt I was getting a lot of help and support from Jane (Thank You).” (male aged 54, worked over 20 years as a printer and found a full time job with another employer in the same profession)

“I enjoyed the project, it was informative.  Updating my CV was a great help.  I enjoyed the Work Club’s content, style, and meeting others in similar positions.” (male aged 57, who was out of work for the last six years)

“Had a good time and found courses very useful.” (male aged 60, who found full time work as a hydrant technician)

“Very good, very helpful in every way! Very friendly especially Ewa and Jane (+ all the other staff). Environment good, sessions informative, ability to look for work!” (male aged 58, who was out of work the last seven years)

“I feel that I have gained increased knowledge regarding CV writing and Application Process.” (male  aged 53, who completed ITQ level 1 and 2 while on programme)

“It is a very good idea. I have got professional and kind support. Thank you very much.” (male aged 59, who secured employment as a warehouse operative)

“Very good programme, people are friendly. Learning little bit of computer was very good. I am very pleased for myself!” (male aged 63, who gained his first IT skills during the programme)

“Jane was absolutely brilliant. She understood my situation very well.” (male aged 53, was made redundant after highly successful career)

“The advisers Jane and Ewa have been most professional and helpful in assisting me to get back to the job market. They have given me valuable advice and leads to various jobsites and vacancies.” (female aged 60, encouraged to brush up her IT skills actually completing ITQ Level 2 at Bedford College)

“I enjoyed this course and I learnt quite a bit. In future I would love to come back.” (female aged 55, who secured part time employment as a general assistant in a care home)

“On the programme I learnt a lot more. I had two teachers who were very  good. They had lots of patience to help to find and apply for jobs. I am very happy with the job I am doing. Mrs Jane and Mrs Ewa, they are my family.” (female aged 54, migrant worker unemployed for the last 2 years; found a full time work in desired profession)

“Ewa and Jane helped me a lot with trying to find a job. When I first come to the Job Club I did not Know how to use a  computer. I did know what a CV was. They helped me with my CV and showed me how to get into Universal Job match. I felt very relaxed and comfortable with them not nervous at all.” (female aged 58, who gained her first IT skills during the programme)

“Gained more experience with using computer – help at work club was great helping me to access and now independently use Universal Job match for electronic job search, I was happy with all the support I received.” (female aged 56, who secured a job as a retail operative and gained IT skills while on the programme)

“I have enjoyed my time at Kennedy Scott. I feel I have made huge progress. I have come from nothing to gaining a degree. I would like to thank you Patrick Hyde for all his help and support throughout my journey at Kennedy Scott.” (female aged 55, who gained her first qualification ever during the programme)

“This programme has helped me in many ways. Staff (Patrick) have been very helpful in what I have achieved.” (male aged 55 without formal education, who gained his CSCS qualifications during the programme)

“I am happy that I have learned some computer skills, and I will carry on and do more.” (female aged 53, working whole life in production who gained her first IT skills during the programme)

“Programme has been brilliant! Support from all staff, who work as a team. I have built up my confidence and now able to write and send off my application forms with confidence. Covering letter session was good.” (female aged 57, who secured full time job as a carer)

“Helped with confidence, all staff very helpful and friendly. I feel I have learnt how to use the computer better in relation to my actual job search.” (female aged 58, who works as an Assistant Manager in charity shop)

“Very helpful and friendly, made me feel at ease and not daft in not being able to use a computer. Enjoyable work club. Help with computer use. Liked the advisers and the other clients.” (female aged 51, who gained her first IT skills during the programme)

“Excellent programme, help with job search and on tap tea and biscuits. Real help with adviser finding jobs and then helping me apply for them.” (male 52, who has learning difficulties, secured temp job at the agency)