Employability e-bulletin
December 2014

We have a few last updates to send out before we get into enjoying the festive season. If you have already decorated your offices then we ask that you take some time away from your spiced Christmas coffee and singing Santas to catch up on the latest employability news here in Fife and beyond.

Amongst many other items we have the latest latest on European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF), an exciting new Rural Skills Academy starting in 2015, OWLS webinars, and information on DWP payment and closure dates over the festive period.

If you have courses you want to promote or news to share then our next e-bulletin will be going out in January 2015. Please send any content you wish to include to me by Friday 9 January 2015.

From all of us here at FVA I'd like to wish you a happy and peaceful festive season.

Best wishes,

Christine Davison

In This Issue
European Structural and Investment Funds updates announced
We have an important announcement on European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) from Opportunities Fife Partnership. Click here to read the latest updates.

Fife Employability Forum

Joint Health and Social Care and Employability forum


Wednesday 11 February 2015, 9.30am to 14.00pm, Hall B, Rothes Halls, Glenrothes.


The next Employability Forum will have a focus on the connections between health and employability so we are taking the opportunity to join up with members of the FVA Health and Social Care Forum to share experience and learning.


Participants will:

  • Explore the connections between health and employment;
  • Learn about the employment support agenda for people with health problems and disabilities in Fife;
  • Understand key changes in the integration of health and social care provision in Fife; and
  • Have the opportunity to browse stalls hosted by relevant local support organisations.

To book a place or host a stall please contact us.

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Fife Rural Skills Academy, January 2015


This Academy will showcase a variety of jobs in the rural sector including forestry, horticulture, land management, and conservation. For five weeks participants will be part of a team gaining practical work experience. They will gain basic recognised training including first aid and health and safety. The deadline for applications is 07 January 2015. To find out more click here 

Community Jobs Scotland Allocations Available


As SCVO enters the final quarter of phase 4 of Community Jobs Scotland (CJS) there might be an opportunity to offer an additional CJS position. Places are very limited, however if you would like to be considered for this please contact Michael Hollinger at Michael.Hollinger@scvo.org.uk or call 0141 559 5014 for more information.

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Training and Learning Opportunities


OWLS - Free new tool for trainers and training organisations


Do you want to improve the quality of the training you offer? Can you spare around 30 minutes at some point this week to attend a FREE webinar? (You can even register and watch the recording later if that's more convenient). If you do then Funding Ideas Limited can tell you about OWLS, a new FREE quality assurance tool designed to help training organisations to improve their vocational training services. Dates include:

To find out more or to book your place, click the link for the day that suits you best. 

Offender Employability Summit, 20 May 2015, Edinburgh


This summit will be held on Wednesday 20 May 2015 at Dynamic Earth in Edinburgh and is a joint endeavour between Scottish Prison Service and the Scottish Government Community Justice and Employability teams. The summit will aim to showcase the talents and skills of those with offending backgrounds, allow employers to share their experience of working with ex-offenders and facilitate engagement with a wide range of experienced and relevant stakeholders. To read more click here.
Other News

DWP Update - signing over Christmas and New Year


Job Centre Plus offices will be closed on Thursday 25 December to Friday 26 December and again on Thursday 1 January to Friday 2 January.

Job Seekers Allowance signing will be excused from Monday 22 December to Friday 2 January, however customers may still be required to attend Jobcentre appointments. Customers will need to satisfy conditionality during this period and this will be checked at next signing. There are computers in all Jobcentres that customers can use during opening hours.  

DWP Stakeholder Bulletin - November 2014


Key points from the DWP November Stakeholder Bulletin include:

  • Time limit for Jobseeker's Allowance European Economic Area claimants - Since 10 November, migrants from the European Economic Area, (EEA) residing in the UK as a jobseeker are only able to claim Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) for a period of 91 days. A short extension to this period will be considered if the claimant can provide evidence that they have a genuine prospect of finding work after the period has elapsed. JSA claims will stop if the claimant is unable to provide suitable evidence.
  • From 27 November, anyone claiming JSA who are subject to intensive work search requirements in Scotland and Wales will undergo screening to identify English speaking and listening skills that fall below Entry Level 2. In Scotland claimants will be assessed against Access 3 or SCQF level 3.

Read the highlights or the full bulletin for further information.

Local data now available on KnowFife Dataset from 2011 Census 


Local data from Scotland's 2011 Census is now available on the KnowFife Dataset through the 2011 Census Profile, and interactive thematic maps. The census is a unique source for information that is not routinely available from other sources. The KnowFife Dataset makes it possible to view census data for a whole new set of local geographies which are not included in the Census Data Explorer including area committee, community councils, school catchment areas, and SIMD quintiles. To read more click here.  

Report: Third Sector and Welfare on the Frontline
This report by SCVO looks at the cumulative impact of welfare reform on organisations on the frontline and the people they serve. It highlights the existing research into the impact of welfare reform on key groups, showcases some examples of best practice and lists recommendations to government. To read the full report click here.
Record numbers of working families in poverty due to low-paid jobs
Insecure, low-paid jobs are leaving record numbers of working families in poverty, with two-thirds of people who found work in the past year taking jobs for less than the living wage, according to the latest annual report from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. As many people from working families are now in poverty as from workless ones, partly due to a vast increase in insecure work on zero-hours contracts, or in part-time or low-paid self-employment. Nearly 1.4 million people are on the controversial contracts that do not guarantee minimum hours. To read more click here.
Report: Seven year plan for youth employment

The Scottish Government has published a new youth employment strategy to reflect changing economic conditions and publication of the Commission for Developing Scotland's Young Workforce earlier this year. The commission called for substantial changes to vocational education in Scotland and its recommendations on improved opportunities for vulnerable groups have informed the strategy's aims to enable young people of all backgrounds to succeed in a stronger, fairer and more equitable society.

New scheme to help keep out of work Fifers healthy and active
A new scheme to help people get active and back into work has launched in Dunfermline. Daytime Active is a 10 monthly pass which allows access to 12 fitness centres across Fife. The programme is being delivered by Fife Sports and Leisure Trust at Jobcentres in Dunfermline and other Fife areas and is open to those claiming jobseeker's allowance and employment support allowance. Read the press article here.
Vacancies with APEX - Dundee
Inclusion Plus - Dundee aims to improve the life chances of disadvantaged and disaffected young people in schools as well as reducing the number of exclusions and progressions to off campus provision. APEX requires two new staff members to join its team. To find out more or to apply please click here.

Opportunities Fife Partnership website 


Check out the Opportunities Fife website and its regularly updated job vacancies list.  Current opportunities include Visual Welding Fabrication Inspector and MA Mechanic.

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Fife Voluntary Action | 08456 006 046 | info@fifevoluntaryaction.org.uk |
Craig Mitchell House
Flemington Road
Glenrothes, KY7 5QF