Fife Works, the pioneering employability project set up by Kingdom Housing Association, has celebrated its 10th anniversary with a relaunch event attended by Scottish minister Jamie Hepburn MSP.
An audience of eighty including clients who have benefited from the project, partners, funders and other stakeholders gathered in Rothes Halls, Glenrothes, to celebrate the achievement and to see the project renamed ‘Kingdom Works’.
Since it was established in 2008, Fife Works assisted over 5000 unemployed clients, with more than 3000 taking up accredited training opportunities, and has helped over 2300 people to secure employment. It will now go forward as Kingdom Works.
Bill Banks, chief executive with Kingdom, said: “Last year we formed a new subsidiary and took the opportunity to rebrand our logos and promote the range of diverse activities we undertake as part of the Kingdom Group. Fife Works was part of this rebranding review and given the project can now operate across all our geographic areas of operation, I’m pleased to announce, that as from today the project will now be known as ‘Kingdom Works’.
“This will allow us to continue the work we have been doing and look at further expanding the activities carried by the project.”
In 2018/19 the project will expand to provide opportunities for unemployed people living in disadvantaged areas of Clackmannanshire, Falkirk and Perth & Kinross. This is as a result of Kingdom’s Affordable Housing Programme of works planned in these areas during 2018/19 and beyond.
As Fife Works, the project delivered numerous achievements and Freya Lees, Kingdom’s chair, said: “Our Mission at Kingdom is to provide More than a Home and our employability project is a very good example of how we deliver on this, through the added value we provide to tenants and people in our communities.”
Jamie Hepburn MSP, the minister for business, fair work and skills attended the event as the keynote speaker and congratulated all involved.
He said: “The 10th anniversary of Fife Works marks a significant milestone for Kingdom Housing Association and its partners in delivering employability support.
“This project complements the Scottish Government’s approach to devolved employment support services like Fair Start Scotland, which treat people with fairness, dignity and respect and gives employers access to unique perspectives, experience and skills sets, and the committed employees they need to thrive.
“We have a clear focus on integrating employability support with health, justice, and housing which ensures a solid platform on which we will build future employability services.”
Robin Presswood, Fife Council’s head of economy planning and employability, praised Fife Works for its pioneering work and highlighted the economic and social benefits the employability project had delivered.
Over the years Fife Works received funding from The European Structural Investment Funds, Fife Council and the Scottish Government for the delivery of various employability projects. It is a partner of Fife ETC, Fife’s third sector employment and training consortium.
The project has a Skills Development Scotland contract to deliver Employability Fund Stage 4. The Employability Fund supports the Youth Employment Strategy by delivering over 9,000 new opportunities across Scotland and is delivered locally by employability partners. The Employability Fund has a strong focus on work experience to respond to the different needs of each individual, while also adapting to employer demands on a local basis.