The Employability Network Programme (ENP) delivered by The Change Consortium (TCC) with a grant of £120,000 received from the Big Lottery Fund as part of its Reaching Communities programme and was delivered over a three-year period from February 2014 to February 2017.
The programme’s aim was:
“To provide local residents with a programme of employment support, training and personal employment coaching; bringing them closer to the employment market or starting their own businesses; increasing their chances in life, their own prosperity and local community wellbeing”
The ENP worked with unemployed local residents primarily from the Black Country. The programme targeted individuals classed as looking for management roles, who tend not to be eligible for standard job support interventions provided by job centres. The programme also sought to support specific sub-groups, including women, people with disabilities, lone parents and people from ethnic minority communities.
The programme provided support in the form of one-to-one job coaching, and skills development (e.g. job search, CV preparation and writing application emails; use of LinkedIn; and self-employment). This approach had been successfully piloted through a similar intervention run by TCC.
TCC compared benefits against the cost of delivery and arrive at a cost-benefit ratio for the programme which shows that for every £1 invested, a social return of £27.60 was generated
The programme developed a very effective operating model to support a cohort of the unemployed who find themselves needing support, but who are not entitled to statutory support initiatives. It therefore fills an important gap, providing people with the hope and confidence to return to work.
The Change Consortium (TCC) specialises in providing 1:1 support for those experiencing multiple issues while wishing (at some point) to return to the work place. Based at West Bromwich Town Hall and operating an outreach service, we specialise in those needing direction following anxiety and stress as well as supporting those with physical disabilities and people aged 60+ and offer a totally flexible schedule to all those with caring responsibilities. TCC also offer work placements via The People’s Orchestra.
Enquires to Mariann Harris, Project Liaison on 0121 569 2615 and 07881 279970. Alternatively, email
Building Better Opportunities (BBO) is a new national programme funded by money from the European Social Fund (ESF) and Big Lottery Fund (BLF) to tackle poverty and social exclusion.
Steps to Work are the lead organisation for BRIDGES, which is one of the four Black Country BBO programmes, aimed at assisting people across Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton develop their skills and confidence.
We are working with 29 partner organisations across the Black Country with the aim of the project being to provide an individualised and broad approach to give those with multiple barriers, individually tailored support to meet their needs, and to move closer towards employment.
The partnership consists of a diverse range of organisations covering a wide range of specialisms including mental and physical health issues & disabilities, Drug & Alcohol, LGBTQ, refugees & migrants along with many more. Our partners, all offering multiple support and activities, can be viewed here.
BRIDGES can support anyone who is:
25 years and over
Unemployed (cannot be in part time work or on 0 hours contract)
Economically Inactive (including those not working who are claiming benefits)
Has complex needs/multiple barriers which are impacting on being able to enter paid employment
Requires support to fully and independently engage in existing service
The BRIDGES project can help you with any of the following, get in touch to find out more
Confidence and Motivation
Information, Advice and Guidance
CV and Application Form Support
Job Search Support
Arts and Crafts