Extra local funding announced for SEND reforms

The Department for Education has announced an additional; £80 million to extend opportunities to children with special educational needs and disabilities.

Children and Families Minister, Edward Timpson, said the £80 million would help transform the life chances of children across the country and ensure every child, regardless of the challenges they face, can ‘dream big’ and fulfil their potential.

Scottish development funding available for innovative employment support

The Scottish Government is seeking applications for development funding to support the refreshed delivery approach for The Keys to Life, launched in June this year, to develop and enhance services for people with learning disabilities.

The Keys to Life refreshed delivery approach aims to improve lives through a shared vision and four identified strategic outcomes which are a healthy life, choice and control, independence and active citizenship.

Hopes for Monwel rescue

Plans to save Gwent road sign manufacturer Monwel, which ceased trading last month with the loss of 38 jobs, are now underway thanks to the Welsh Government stepping in.

The social enterprise, which described itself as Wales’ largest road traffic sign manufacturer, closed its Ebbw Vale offices on July 30, after running a deficit of around £400,000. But now the business could be saved after the Welsh Government steps in to fund asset purchase.

Welsh briefing for European funds project

WALES Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA) is running an Introducing Active Inclusion information event in Barry on August 6.

The event will provide organisations with details of a new multi-million pound European funding scheme aimed at tackling poverty, social exclusion and unemployment.

Shaw Trust seeks delivery partners


Shaw Trust are looking for Expressions of Interest from organisations who can deliver Big Lottery Fund - Tackling Multiple Needs to Improving Employability in the Tees Valley and south west England. Their website contains a brief outline of the project; the intention of Shaw Trust is to assess the level of interest from potential supply chain partners and follow that up with an indicative offer on flows and pricing thereafter where appropriate.

The deadline for submission of Expressions of Interest is Tuesday 30 June 2015.

Coventry service wins reprieve until December

Coventry's TESS service has been told that funding is now secure until the end of 2015. The service had been under threat of closure due to funding restrictions. The announcement was made just one hour before a public meeting was due to discuss the closure. Leader of the city council, Ann Lucas, said she had asked finance chief Damian Gannon to identify cash which could keep the service going until the end of the year.

Coventry service under threat - updated

Coventry's award-winning supported employment service, TESS, is apparently under threat. The Council’s Place Directorate management are proposing to discontinue the flagship service for vulnerable adults and young people with learning disabilities, autism and severe and enduring mental ill health. In addition the proposals could implement post cuts at the highly successful Job Shop.

ELITE awarded grant for Merthyr social enterprise

Fifteen jobs have been created thanks to a grant awarded to Elite Supported Employment Agency. The £63,500 grant from the EU-funded South East Wales Community Economic Development programme will fund machinery and staff costs in the setting-up of ELITE Paper Solutions in Merthyr Tydfil.

Andrea Wayman, chief executive officer of ELITE, said:

£5m investment in supported internships

The Department for Education have announced that they will be allocating an additional £5m investment into supported internships. The investment will aim to enable local authorities to increase the number of providers of supported internships, increase links with local businesses and develop study programmes for all young people with SEND.

The non-ringfenced funding will be distributed between all local authorities, with a 'top slice' of £15000 allocated to each of nine regional support leads.

Greater Manchester to control health and social care budget

Greater Manchester is to be given control of the region's £6bn health and social care budget. NHS England is to hand spending decisions on regional healthcare to local politicians, clinical commissioning groups and NHS trusts. The devolved power agreement is expected to be confirmed by the Chancellor George Osborne on Friday and the plan will come into force from April 2016.

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