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Supporting local people to access training, skills, and education. Helping borough residents to take full advantage of employment opportunities.

We are fully aware and sympathetic that for many people the impact of the pandemic will have brought worries about livelihoods and their futures. However, the good news is there has never been more opportunities to train and get support to find employment, whether you are unemployed and looking for work, looking to retrain into a new role or looking to gain further skills to advance your career. I would encourage people to get in touch with one of the services to help them gain the skills needed to take full advantage of opportunities with local businesses. Neil Thomas, chief executive and principal at Dudley College of Technology and Forging a Future for All’s Aspiration lead for Skills.

Covid-19 has brought uncertainty and hardship to so many people’s lives and its impact on jobs will have brought increased worry to families.

So access to employment advice and support is more important than ever and in Dudley this continues to be available to residents across the borough. Dudley borough’s vision - Forging a Future for All – aims for the borough to be a place where everybody, whatever their age, has the education and skills they need to realise their full potential and achieve employment. A wide range of services and partners, from the local authority and colleges to sector-based work academies are working to help residents tackle the barriers they face to work. And in these difficult times together they are forging closer links with training providers and businesses, working across boundaries equipping people with the skills needed to find new jobs, retrain for new opportunities and get the experiences they need to succeed.

2021 will be a year of recovery and growth and anything we can do to make it easier for people to get on the career ladder is going to help not only transform lives but also boost the economy. Businesses will be looking for new skilled staff to help drive their business forward, but competition for roles will be fierce so we are determined to develop the borough’s talent and skills for the future and to support a new generation of entrepreneurs to inject energy into our local economy. Corin Crain, chief executive of Black Country Chamber and Forging a Future for All’s Aspiration Lead for business.