Working in Partnership - Keeping it Local Our company Traind'd Up is the UK partner of the Erasmus+ Reaching the Lost Generation Project (2014 – 2017). We are based in Central Scotland just outside the city of Stirling. Together with our Hungarian (Edunet), German (ETC) and Polish (Pedagogical University of Krakow) colleagues, we have put together an employability and enterprise programme to support young people in Europe to help them to avoid becoming NEETs.
During the project this programme will be delivered at least twice in each country to a variety of groups of young people, so that we
Our office premises are owned by an enterprise company Ceteris who support local businesses. As we wanted take the young people out of their educational environment, we approached Ceteris who agreed to provide us with accommodation free of charge in another local business centre which they own. This gave the young people the opportunity to be based in a professional environment where they could see a number of small businesses at work. For our second course Ceteris again provided accommodation in their business centre and also 2 of their Business Advisers were involved in the programme to deliver sessions to the young people. As we had to transport the participants from school we negotiated with a local transport company, Woods of Tillicoultry, who provided a minibus at a reduced rate.
Now that we have delivered 2 courses; 11 pupils have stayed on at school, 6 attend the local Further Education College (taking vocational courses in Hospitality, Construction, Business Studies and Hairdressing) and 3 are apprentices with local businesses. These are very positive outcomes for this group of young people as several of them were planning to leave school at age 16 with no definite plan of what to do.
On a previous Leonardo project with the same European partners we developed a Partnership Toolkit and we have used the same principles in partnership working with the RLG project. We find that partners are keen to get involved when they understand the benefits this brings to them. For the school there were obvious benefits in providing additional support from a local business for their pupils. For Ceteris, whose role is to support small businesses, they were able to demonstrate to their Board of Management that they were involved in the local community and their Business Advisers were helping to promote enterprise to local young people. Even the transport company could see the benefits of their buses being used at a time when they were otherwise idle, as we arranged the pick-up times to suit their previous commitments.
When our Hungarian, German and Polish colleagues visited us here in Scotland for our recent project meeting we used the beautiful Gean House in Alloa, which is also owned by Ceteris, for our meetings and overnight accommodation. We had a visit to Alva Academy to meet with the staff and pupils, and our meeting ended with an address by the Chief Executive of Ceteris. This gave our European partners the opportunity to meet the Scottish partners who are helping to make our project a success.