Norfolk and Suffolk organisations invited to find out more about funding for employment projects

Approximately £500,000 is available for community-based structured learning projects aimed at unemployed and inactive people aged 16+ who are facing barriers to work or disadvantage in the work place.

The fund is managed by the Local Investment in Future Talent (LIFT) programme, with grants available up to a maximum of £20,000, which can be used to cover up to 100% of project costs.

Cllr Graham Plant, Deputy Leader of Norfolk County Council and Cabinet Member for Growing the Economy, said: “This funding is for projects that will support people to gain the confidence, skills and knowledge to move into employment or into formal accredited learning and skills provision.

“Many people face multiple challenges to securing employment and this scheme is designed to help people benefit from effective targeted support at a local level.”

Funded by the European Social Fund, LIFT Community Grants are aimed at Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) sector organisations for eligible projects. These will aim to fill gaps in local community provision within Norfolk and Suffolk, the New Anglia LEP area.

Twenty organisations from across both counties have been awarded a grant so far and there are funds available for at least a further 24 projects.

Case study:

New-U Enterprises, a UK registered charity, have been awarded a grant of £20,000 to run their You’ve Got This project for young people aged 16+ who are not in employment, education or training (NEET).  The project will run workshops to build confidence, self- esteem and aspiration and offers individualised retail work experience and training in their clothes and accessories swap shop in Castle Quarter, Norwich.  Participants will be able to put all they have learned into practice by helping organise an New-U event, each person working to their individual strengths.  Support to take up options for moving into employment, self-employment or further training will also be provided.

Helen Read, LIFT Project Facilitator said: “‘You’ve Got This’ is bringing together young people furthest from work from a variety of backgrounds. It is heartwarming to see people who have been isolated working as part of a team and those lacking in confidence realising they have something of value to contribute.  This funding has allowed us to bridge the gap for people who need flexibility and reassurance to build on soft skills such as self-esteem, team working, communication and reliability as they move towards work or training.”

Toby - participant (not real name) in the scheme said: “I’ve made friends and enjoyed working with others to solve problems.  I didn’t think I’d be able to contribute much, but I did and that feels good.  I am looking forward to helping organise an event by writing a blog, something I have not had the chance to do before.”

For more information about the community grants scheme visit or email


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