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Past Projects

We are delighted to announce that we have successfully completed all our projects from Oct 2014 till March 2016. Nari Ekta supported 294 unemployed Ethnic Minority women through providing impartial IAG and vocational & customised training within Leeds who have low level of basic skills to gain skills to reach levels of employability.  A range of 6 weeks and 3-6-9 months learning programmes were organised in Administration, GCSE English, Functional Skills Math Level 1/2, IT, Child Care, Teaching, ESOL and Numeracy including courses in partnership with Leeds City College. The learners also had the opportunity to enroll for Level 3 and 4 courses depending upon individual needs and level. Varieties of work experience placements and voluntary work were organised for 1 – 12 weeks again depending on individual needs and the availabilities of the placements.

We delivered following programmes of study from October 2014 to March 2016:

 

Employment and Skills Project from October 2014 – March 2015 (Funded by LCC)

Nari Ekta had funding from Leeds City Council under Employment and Skills which supported Nari Ekta to engage 65 clients.  A range of flexible learning programmes were organised in Administration, GCSE English, Functional Skills Maths Level 1/2, employment sessions were delivered including partnership with Leeds City College.  Varieties of work experience placements and voluntary work were organised depending on individual needs and the availabilities of the placements.  We achieved our agreed targets for the financial year 2014/15.

Steps to Employment Project 2014 (Funded by Your Consortium)

This project ‘Steps to Employment’ engaged 43 unemployed 19+ women from ethnic minorities of Leeds.  The programme included accredited and non-accredited courses. The course started with identifying individual learning needs through formal and informal assessments and developing Individual Learning Plans to set goals.  Information Advice & Guidance (IAG) was provided about the further education and employment opportunities. Employability skills including telephone, interview and job search skills were part of the programme.  Taster sessions were delivered in Computing and Maths to explore the progression route to further learning and employment opportunities.

Community Learning from January 2015 to July 2015 (Funded by LCC)

Nari Ekta is on Adult Community Learning framework for 3 years from September 2014 to July 2017.  Under this project we engaged 73 clients and delivered courses in Introduction to teaching, English, Maths and IT.  The courses started with identifying individual learning needs through formal and informal assessments and developing Individual Learning Plans to set goals.  Information Advice & Guidance (IAG) was provided throughout the courses regarding further education and employment opportunities.

Community Learning from September 2015 to March 2016 (Funded by LCC)

During this project we engaged 123 clients and delivered courses in English, Maths and IT. The courses started with identifying individual learning needs through formal and informal assessments and developing Individual Learning Plans to set goals.  Information Advice & Guidance (IAG) was provided throughout the courses regarding further education and employment opportunities.

English My Way 2015 (Funded by Tinder Foundation)

Nari Ekta was successful to gain English My Way Grant through Tinder Foundation in March 2015. We engaged 30 clients who had very low level of English. The aim of the project was to improve language, communication, confidence, assertiveness, Information Technology and employability skills of women from Ethnic Minority to progress to further education and employment.

Steps to Employment Project 2015 (Funded by Your Consortium)

This project ‘Steps to Employment’ engaged 30 unemployed 19+ women from ethnic minorities of Leeds.  The programme included accredited and non-accredited courses. The course started with identifying individual learning needs through formal and informal assessments and developing Individual Learning Plans to set goals.  Information Advice & Guidance (IAG) was provided about the further education and employment opportunities. Employability skills including telephone, interview and job search skills were part of the programme.  Taster sessions were delivered in Computing and Maths to explore the progression route to further learning and employment opportunities.

English My Way 2016 (Funded by Tinder Foundation)

Nari Ekta was successful to gain English My Way Grant through Tinder Foundation in August 2016. We engaged 25 clients who had very low level of English. The aim of the project was to improve language, communication, confidence, assertiveness, Information Technology and employability skills of women from Ethnic Minority to progress to further education and employment.

 

Projects in Partnership with Leeds City College and Other Employers

 

Leeds City Council values the services provided by Nari Ekta to multi disadvantaged Ethnic Minority women, however the funding was stopped from April 2015 due to the required funding cuts within the council. But the Management Committee and staff decided to hold the course at Enfield centre of Leeds City College.  A diagnostic test was undertaken to assess the suitability of the applicants to the course. Those found not to be suitable were encouraged to take up other training to enable them to prepare for the following year.

Women found suitable for the course were invited for an interview and given a detailed explanation of the Nari Ekta organisation and the course contents. Everyone was encouraged to ask questions about how the course can benefit them.  OCR Level 2 Diploma in Administration (Business Professional), GCSE English and Functional Skills Maths Level 1/2 were run at Enfield centre in partnership with college.  OCR Level 2 Diploma in Administration is particularly suitable for people wishing to train for a career in office work leading to positions in offices.

Additionally to establish a national standard and to ensure that trainees have the required levels of knowledge and understanding, practical assignments, firmly based in realistic and practical working situations, tests the full range of specified competence.  Assignments give trainees every opportunity to demonstrate the outcomes of successful training by means of practical working competence, while providing a structured framework within which the competence of all trainees can be tested against standard performance criteria.  Placements and voluntary work were orgainsed as part of the course.

We have also been working in partnership with Gatehouse awards and delivering B1/ Entry 3 exams by providing opportunity to clients gain citizenship qualifications as per demand.

 

WORK PLACEMENTS

 

OCR Level 2 Diploma in Administration (Business Professional) trainees went on work placement starting in January on one or two days a week, two weeks block during Easter (optional for clients with childcare responsibilities) and four weeks block in July (optional for clients with childcare responsibilities).  Trainees were asked if they had specific organisations where they would like to go and then the organisation of their choice was contacted.

All of the previous years’ employers and some new employers were contacted.  All the relevant documents i.e. Check List of duties were sent to placement providers.  Previous employers were very happy to take a trainee due to the high standard of work produced by past trainees.  A member of Nari Ekta’s staff took trainees to visit the placements and to be interviewed by the employers before starting the placements.  It was hoped that by meeting the employers beforehand, the trainees would feel less nervous on their first day.  Trainees had the opportunity to enquire about what sort of work they would be doing.  The employers did their utmost to help them.

Placements consisted of various departments of Leeds City Council such as: Business and Administration support, Highway & Transportation, HR Schools Team, Children services as well as various departments of Leeds General Infirmary, St. James’s Teaching Hospital and Leeds City College. The other placement providers includes: Leeds Housing Concern, Leeds Involving People, Sikh Elders Service Touchstone, Kher Solicitors, Shantona Womens’ Centre and People in Action.

Whilst on work placements, trainees came to visit staff at the office.  All trainees were extremely pleased with their placements and some of the trainees could not believe that they could do office work.  Some trainees who could not come to the office were contacted by telephone to make sure they were settling in and making use of all the theory they had learnt.  Josiane Marshall, administration teacher from Leeds City College, went to assess the trainees.  The results of the work placements were very rewarding.

Advantages of the work placements are that the trainees have firsthand experience of working in an office or business environment and are able to build on working relationships with the employers and other colleagues.  Trainees have the opportunity to apply for any available posts within the organisation or place their names on the waiting list and using supervisor’s reference when applying for jobs.

We have many clients who are well educated from aboard but struggle to find employment due to lack of experience in the UK.  Under new provision we organised direct placements for these clients with NHS, Leeds City Council and other placement providers.

Lisa Sadler from LCC – HR Strategy Team interviewed trainees after short listing them from application forms and organised placements in different departments within LCC depending on individuals’ skills, knowledge and experience.  Deborah Sadjadi from NHS organised DBS checks for trainees who were joining NHS placements.  We also had placements from our previous placement providers. It takes a lot of time to organise placements but since April 2015 we are continuing this work without any funding as we don’t want to lose valuable links with our placement providers and support to our trainees.

The placements are allocated to learners depending upon their preferences, placements availability, travel arrangements and childcare etc. to make it as convenient as possible for them.

 

Key/Core Skills Gained With Courses At Nari Ekta Are:

 

Application Of Number/Numeracy

Manual / Visual Record Keeping

Information Technology

Communication / Telephone Manner

Working With Others

Contributing Towards The Workflow

Keyboarding Skills

Improving Own Learning & Performance

Job Search Skills

Interview Skills

Preparation Of Curriculum Vitae / Filling Of Application Forms