Building Better Opportunities: Getting Cumbria to Work (BBO GCtW)

Getting Cumbria to Work: Barrow and South Lakeland (GCtW) is a Building Better Opportunities (BBO) project that serves the local authority areas of South Lakeland and Barrow. This programme is funded by the National Lottery Community Fund and the European Social Fund (ESF) who are co-investing in local projects tackling the root causes of worklessness, promoting social inclusion and driving local jobs and growth. It is one of three projects in Cumbria being funded by the European Social Fund and the National Lottery, through the National Lottery Community Fund and is led by Cumbria CVS.

BBO GCtW aims to support and work with individuals who are facing multiple and complex barriers to employment and who are furthest removed from the labour market. It will help them to move towards and into employment by supporting them to play a greater, more productive role in their communities, demonstrate increased skills and confidence and be much more likely to consider employment or volunteering as a viable prospect.

BBO GCtW is led by Cumbria CVS, who are pleased to be working with these partners to successfully deliver the project: Cadas, Women’s Community Matters, Imagine Independence, Right2Work (Oaklea Trust) and The Well Communities CIC. To date the project has worked with over 230 participants and is helping to make a real difference to their lives. The journey that each individual embarks upon within the project is completely different but the aim for all is the same (as above) – to help improve their social/financial/personal standing and to move them closer to the labour market.

To date, 47 individuals have actually moved into employment (including self employment). This is an amazing outcome that the project is very proud of; a further 20 have moved into education and training and many others have moved into volunteering.

The project, which has recently been extended to 2020, is being led by a newly appointed Project Manager – Natalia Wealleans-Turner (Nat) – who joined the project at the end of May 2019. Nat joins the team from Brathay Trust where she was working as Youth Worker to set up, develop and deliver their youth work offer in the Barrow in Furness area. “I’m looking forward to meeting the key workers as well as some of the participants in the BBO GCtW project in the next few weeks,” says Nat. “This project provides an excellent opportunity to support its communities across Barrow and the South Lakes to increase their social and economic capital through accessing the support and expertise of our partners organisations. Barrow and South Lakes is already doing great work with a wide range of participants. I’m hoping that we can use the coming year or more to build on our successes and further develop the BBO offer and get Cumbria to work.”

We look forward to keeping you updated on the success of this project – but in the meantime if you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact the team on 07462 055134 or visit the BBO GCtW website: www.gettingcumbriatowork.org.uk