Carl Sargeant, the Minister for Local Government and Communities, has announced that the Welsh Government is providing over £450,000 to deliver employment support and advice in Communities First areas.
Funding totalling £452,648 will be available until March 2015 so that Jobcentre Plus can work with Communities First clusters to help workless families and in particular lone parents back into work by providing them with local employment advice services.
The Minister said:
“Tackling poverty in every community is a top priority for the Welsh Government and we recognise that this ambitious challenge requires a range of organisations to work together."
“Work is a key way to lift families and individuals out of poverty but we know that in many areas access to support and suitable local services can be difficult.
“This project builds on the highly successful pilot that Job Centre Wales ran in Integrated Children’s Centres between 2010 and 2012 and will play a key role in our efforts to tackle poverty.
“The project will deliver local support to parents with children aged under 5 and also strives to identify and support those parents who are the hardest to reach that are living within the community. We are also considering how this work can in future support work to reduce the number of people who are not in education, employment, or training.
“Reducing the numbers of families living in poverty due to worklessness will make a huge difference not only to their lives but to the communities they live in and society as a whole.”
Martin Brown, Work Services Director Wales and Employers, Department for Work and Pensions said:
"I'm very pleased that Jobcentre Plus can continue to support Communities First in reducing worklessness. We have a strong track record of collaborative working through the Integrated Children's Centres, and have helped many lone parents to secure employment through this approach."
This is one of a number of opportunities that the Welsh Government is developing to support the new Communities First Clusters.