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The ReAct programme will help over 12,000 redundant workers gain new employment or training, and is made possible with over £15m from the European Social Fund, which is managed by the Assembly Government.
As part of a package of measures provided by ReAct, redundant workers will receive a training grant designed to replace outdated skills with those sought by prospective employers.
The new scheme will also help to remove barriers to training such as travel and accommodation costs.
Over 1,000 employers will be encouraged to recruit redundant workers with a £2,000 wage subsidy – and will also receive grant support to enable their employees to undertake training to equip them with the skills they need for their new job.
Deputy First Minister, Ieuan Wyn Jones said that ReAct will play a key part in helping Wales face up to the impact of the world-wide downturn.
Mr Jones said:
This programme will help to equip people with the skills they need in today’s tough economic climate – and ensure Wales makes the best possible use of the opportunities of using European funding to promote prosperity for all our communities.
ReAct will provide direct and practical assistance to people who have been made redundant, and is part of a series of measures over the coming weeks to help individuals and companies deal with the serious global financial and economic issues.
Deputy Minister for Skills, John Griffiths, said:
A recent external evaluation of the support offered to redundant workers in Wales highlights the achievements of the ReAct programme and the impact of European Social Fund funding to date.
In particular, it found that the flexible approach adopted by the programme enabled a rapid response to the diverse needs of redundant workers – exactly the package our country needs during the current global turbulence.
This positive use of European funding will enable the Assembly Government and its partners to build on this success and continue to help redundant workers secure new, sustainable employment.