Three European funded projects have helped change the lives of thousands of people in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly by giving them the confidence they need to get into work, education and training.

Part of the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth programme and delivered by the CSW group, the three projects; Cornwall Skills for Young People, ICAN and the Family and Community Essential Skills project, have supported more than 1,500 individuals and businesses over the past three years.

Aimed at young people aged 15 – 24 who are not in work, education or training, the Cornwall Skills for Young People project provided a wide range of education and training opportunities to help them build their confidence and resilience and support them to overcome their personal barriers.

One of the young people who has benefited from the project is 23 year old Sharina Timms who was fed up with working in pubs and bars and wanted to do something different, possibly working in an office environment, and to have a career.

CSW helped her to find a place on a pre-employment into health care course which was being run by Dynamo Health Care. The aim of the three week course was to help build people’s confidence and give them skills to apply for a job or an apprenticeship. Having successfully completed the course Sharina was feeling optimistic about the future when she discovered that Dynamo was planning to take on an apprentice.

“Thanks to the skills I had learnt on the course I felt confident in applying for the placement and was thrilled when I discovered that I had been successful,” said Sharina.

The ICAN project targeted people over the age of 25 who were already in work and was designed to help them progress and increase their pay and working hours or obtain better quality higher paid jobs.

Steve is one of the people who has gained additional qualifications as a result of taking part in the project. Having moved to Cornwall from Surrey, where he had been caring for some members of his family, he discovered that his time out of the workforce meant he had some gaps in the skills he needed to find the right job.

Through the project, he completed courses in education and training, food hygiene, health and safety and management supervision which, together with his existing qualifications and experience, means he can now offer training courses to others. He is now setting up his own business and has already been contacted by a number of potential clients.

The Family and Community Essential Skills project supported individuals to gain new skills and qualifications, from bespoke learning packages to courses in body massage, kitchen management or coaching multi skills sports.

Paul Hobson, the Chief Executive of CSW group, is thrilled with the success of the three projects: “By helping people to gain new skills and qualifications and improving their confidence these projects have made a real difference to their lives. I am very proud of the impact that CSW Group has made and wish everyone who benefitted from the different projects a successful future.”