Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly TD announced funding support of €300,000 by Google.org, the philanthropic arm of Google, to fund nonprofits supporting local employment opportunities through the Local Employment Task Force.
Launched in 2021 with support from Google, the Employment Task Force aims to find sustainable employment solutions for long-term unemployed people from the south inner city and provide training and development opportunities. This latest grants by Google.org will fund skills programmes by two nonprofits in the local area:
— The Anchorage Project – a community-based training programme in the Ringsend and Irishtown area. The new skills based training will support 70 students to obtain an ITEC-certified level qualification and soft skills to enable them to gain sustainable employment in the beauty and hospitality skills industry.
— The Irish Nautical Trust – Google.org will continue its support of this hugely successful scholarship programme for students to access marine skills and technology. Launched in October 2021, this community-based environment maritime training programme educates local unemployed people and school leavers on the environment. Of 30 recent graduates, 28 have gained employment with ongoing support being provided to the remaining two. The funding supports access for students to obtain a certified level of maritime skills and enable them to gain sustainable employment in the marine industry.
At the event, Minister Donnelly also presented graduation certificates to 10 parents of children with special needs. Each recipient completed Google’s inaugural Special Needs Assistants scholarship programme. A further 10 scholarships were announced by Google covering the Docklands community.
Welcoming Google.org’s funding support to the Anchorage Project and the Irish Nautical Trust, Minister Donnelly said: “The employment opportunities both these programmes provide to the students will play a key role in not only their own futures but that of the wider community. While the State has a role to play, I would call on industry to join companies like Google and enhance their efforts to increase community employment. I have been informed that the majority of previous recipients of the Irish Nautical Trust Marine Skills & Technology scholarship programme secured employment and I look forward to hearing how all scholarship recipients fare in the months ahead”.
He added, “I would also like to sincerely congratulate today’s SNA certificate recipients and commend them on their passion and commitment to facilitating inclusive education in our community. SNAs play an invaluable role in supporting the education and well-being of students with additional needs in schools and these parents commitment to not just the education of their own children but those of the wider community is especially commendable”
David Sneddon, VP, Google Ireland, said, “Today is about recognising the importance of having access to training in your community. I would like to specifically congratulate those who graduated. All those who received a certificate today are mothers of children with additional needs who are passionate about their wider community. We are also delighted to continue our support of the Irish Nautical Trust, an integral member of our Employment Task Force, and we look forward to developing our relationship with the Anchorage project. Google Ireland remains committed to supporting our local community and addressing their needs in partnership with the community.”
Jimmy Murray, Irish Nautical Trust, said, “The Irish Nautical Trust’s mission is to create a marine training apprenticeship programme to train and certify young people in maritime skills to allow them to secure and maintain long-term sustainable employment. However, our work is only possible through support from the government and organisations committed to continuing the nautical skills tradition in Dublin. We are thrilled that this grant from Google.org will support a further 30 graduates through the training scheme”.
Last evening’s event was to present certificates to the first 10 parents of children with special needs who completed the Special Needs Assistants (SNA) qualification with support from Google. This programme was established by Google’s Education Taskforce, a group consisting of the seven local schools in the area, who identified the need for SNA support. At the same time the local Neurodiversity network in the community made up of over 60 families from Irishtown, Ringsend and Pearse Street (NIRP) approached Google seeking training support in the field of SNA and digital support.
Google supported 10 scholarships for the NIRP group. 10 parents successfully achieved level 5 and 6 qualifications in the field of SNA. They carried out their work experience in the local schools supported by the Education Task Force. Following the initial success of the programme, Google has now announced its intention to fund a further 10 scholarships in the Docklands community.