European Social Fund
The European Social Fund is pleased to sponsor the Festival of Learning.
The ESF supports efforts to tackle unemployment, increase social inclusion, and improve skills. For the 2014 to 2020 ESF programme in England we already have funding agreements in place with projects worth over £1.2 billion. The Fund supports hundreds of initiatives across England, like those we are celebrating at the Festival of Learning, which help people of all backgrounds and abilities turn their lives around.
Priorities for ESF funding include helping young people not in education, employment or training, supporting disadvantaged people who are furthest from the labour market, and enabling low killed people to progress. It is the people behind the projects and their hard work and passion that ensures they deliver the help and support needed.
Learning changes lives and the Festival of Learning recognises and celebrates achievement through learning.
Thanks to ESF support, many people, such as this year’s ESF Outstanding Individual Learner, have improved their skills and qualifications, have overcome issues along the way, and are now moving towards or are already in employment. Learning new skills has helped Scott find work and resettle more effectively in his community, following a prison sentence.
The ESF Project Award goes to the Genius Within project which is finding innovative ways of providing specialist help to young offenders with neuro differences.
You can find out more about Scott, Genius Within, and other ESF winners in this booklet.
May congratulations to all the winners and everyone nominated for an award. I look forward to meeting you at the National Award Ceremony in Birmingham.
Dr Catherine Blair – Head of European Social Fund Division Department for Work and Pensions