A NEW scheme that gives businesses the chance to receive funding to help upskill and train employees is now open.
The £3.5million Ayrshire Skills Investment Fund (ASIF) is available to employers across Ayrshire.
It offers them a chance to apply for funding – a maximum of £3000 per person – to help address skill gaps in their workforce.
The Fund is an Ayrshire Growth Deal project and has been established to target priority groups – young people, females, people with long term health conditions and people in low paid employment –to help them gain new skills and qualifications in existing and emerging growth sectors.
The sectors targeted in the fund are engineering – including aerospace, digital, visitor economy – including food and drink, and clean growth and may change as other priorities emerge.
The work of the University of Strathclyde’s Fraser of Allander Institute highlights levels of significant regional inequality in Scotland – and ASIF has been set up to try and improve the underperforming Ayrshire economy by targeting groups and sectors which can be positively impacted.
People being given the opportunity must live in Ayrshire and training can be accredited or delivered in house, providing the flexibility for employers to deliver the training or identify a trainer of their choice.
North Ayrshire Councillor Marie Burns, Chair of Ayrshire Joint Committee, said: “We are delighted that the fund is now open and hope businesses across Ayrshire can use it to help their workforce and provide them with the skills that will enhance their careers now and in the future.
“There are skills gaps and we are looking to address these and provide opportunities for disadvantaged groups at the same time.
“The Ayrshire Growth Deal is exciting for the whole region. It is all very well investing in big projects, but we have to have the personnel in place and ready to deliver the work.”
Scottish Government Wellbeing Economy Secretary Neil Gray said:
“I warmly welcome the launch of this fund, which will help the people of Ayrshire gain the skills they need to secure satisfying and well-paid jobs.
“This £3.5 million investment, made possible through the Ayrshire Growth Deal, will help raise aspiration and ambition. It will reduce inequalities and support businesses in the region to be more innovative as we move to a greener, fairer and more prosperous economy.”
To apply for an ASIF Grant, complete the online application form and submit. If you require a paper version of this form, this can be provided. The application form can be found by following this link
More about the ASIF Employer Grant Application
Employers can contact email@example.com for any support completing the form.
The first round of the fund opened on 23 October and closes on 8 November, with successful applicants notified by 24 November.
A second stage will open on 9 November 2023 and will close on 26 January 2024 with successful applicants notified by 16 February. Further funding rounds will be available on a rolling programme