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Pioneering courses for emergency service workers launching to upskill and futureproof workforce

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Training courses created to support and upskill blue light service workers are now available in Greater Manchester as part of the city-region’s three-year Skills for Growth programme.

Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) has awarded funding to Seetec Outsource to create The Blue Light Development Academy. GMCA has awarded nearly £2m to Seetec to establish the academy, with the training programme fully-funded through the European Social Fund (ESF).

The Blue Light Development Academy aims to support blue light staff with career development including leadership skills. There is also a strong focus on personal well-being, with programmes available on building resilience and for managers to understand health needs of staff.

Councillor Eamonn O’Brien, Greater Manchester’s Lead for Education, Work, Skills, Apprenticeships and Digital, said:

“We are proud of Greater Manchester’s pioneering Skills for Growth programme and all of its achievements, with thousands of employees supported in building their careers. However, we know there are still many industries in the city-region who could benefit from fully-funded training.

“The newly launched Blue Light Academy recognises the demanding work of emergency services staff and includes specially adapted courses on how they can manage their well-being during pressured situations. This will not only be of benefit to the workforce, but also our residents who will receive a better service as a result.”

Seetec has been granted £1,998,763.75 to launch The Blue Light Development Academy. The training programme has been developed in collaboration with North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) with plans to expand to support to other blue light services in the future. The training, made up of workshops and e-learning, aims to help learners with leadership skills, coaching and management.

The courses available for front-line and support staff include:

  • British Sign Language
  • Presentation Skills
  • Understanding Health in the Workplace for Managers
  • Bespoke Leadership and Management
  • Digital Skills
  • Inclusivity and Diversity Awareness
  • And a range of other topics.

Lloyd DeVal, Director of Sector Skills at Seetec Outsource, said:

“Working collaboratively with North West Ambulance Service, we’re delighted to be able to support the overall mental health and resilience of the emergency services sector in Greater Manchester by upskilling workers so they can progress their career development and improve their overall personal wellbeing.

“As an award-winning provider with significant experience of delivering across Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), Seetec Outsource is well placed to deliver the skilled workforce that Greater Manchester needs to meet current and future challenges and embrace growth opportunities.”

Skills for Growth is GMCA’s three-year programme aimed at plugging skills gaps employers in Greater Manchester have highlighted they are struggling to fill.  

A range of industries are being supported by the programme including the leisure sector, creative and cultural industry, construction, blue light services, green economy as well as HR, customer services the digital industry, logistics and manufacturing.

The Skills for Growth programme is available as a result of GMCA securing funding from the European Social Fund to deliver a three-year programme, working in partnership with businesses and training providers to create new learning opportunities for employed residents in the city-region.

Throughout the programme, GMCA has gathered intelligence from businesses, which has been used to shape new training programmes.

Skills for Growth and Skills Bootcamps have been designed to support employers who have highlighted they cannot find the technical skills in Greater Manchester required to support and grow their businesses. Skills for Growth supports businesses to increase skills levels of employees, while Skills Bootcamps gives employers access to a pool of newly trained individuals. 

Individuals can only complete one Skills for Growth course. Applicants are advised to research all the programmes available before applying. 

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