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Wednesday, 12 December

Step Up In Suffolk

Vertas in Norfolk

Young people across Suffolk will get to benefit from a new scheme to help them learn hospitality skills thanks to a new partnership between Vertas, charity Inspire Suffolk and hotel group TA Hotel Collection.

Inspire Suffolk’s two week Step Up programme, funded by the New Anglia LEP, aims to provide young people aged 16-24, the opportunity to gain industry related training and qualifications as a stepping stone into employment.

The two courses will run in Ipswich and Lowestoft – towns which contain pockets of the worst deprivation in the UK (according to the Suffolk Community Foundation’s Hidden Needs Report 2016).

TA Hotel Collection are hoping to offer young people who complete the course a role at one of their Suffolk coastal hotels, such as The Crown in Woodbridge and The White Lion in Aldeburgh.

Vertas are offering roles such as Food Service Assistants with opportunities for career progression.

The course includes interview skills, CV building, relevant job training, supported work experience at one of Vertas' catering locations and Food Hygiene qualifications.

Terry Baxter, CEO of Inspire Suffolk, said: “We are partnering with TA Hotel Collection and Vertas on such a beneficial project, supporting and believing in the potential of local young people. Our Step Up courses are a brilliant way to bridge the skills gap and our partnership with local companies through the courses are a great example of ‘local supporting local’ and we thank them both very much.”

Peter Osborne, TA Hotel Collection Managing Director – Coast added: “We are committed to making a difference for young people and helping to educate the next generation of hospitality industry professionals. We look forward to welcoming the students at our hotels where they can experience a real customer focused environment and put their learning into context.”

Ian Surtees CEO of Vertas Group Limited said: “The opportunity to upskill and develop disadvantaged young people, while recruiting talent for our growing business, is one we jumped at. This collaboration will give those who have had to overcome additional challenges the chance to ‘Step Up’ into a promising career in the catering and hospitality sector. We’re very much looking forward to welcoming the new recruits to Vertas and supporting them into work.”

Inspire Suffolk has previously run Step Up courses in Health & Social Care, Construction, Hospitality, Retail and Sport with many more to launch in sectors where upskilling is needed. This has allowed young people to gain qualifications and training they require to get onto their desired career path including CSCS card training and Health & Safety qualifications, with many opportunities available to partner with local organisations to provide prospects to local young people.

Picture: Vertas has taken the opportunity to upskill and develop disadvantaged young people in Suffolk.

Article written by Cathryn Ellis

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