A £4m scheme to help over 1,200 nuclear energy workers in Wylfa and Trawsfynydd prepare for future careers has been launched by the Minister for Business, Enterprise, Technology and Science, Edwina Hart.
Menter Mon’s Shaping the Future project will address the impact of nuclear industry restructuring resulting from the decommissioning plans of the two sites in north west Wales. It will provide careers advice, mentoring, training and job search support to help the workforce maximise their future employment opportunities within the region.
While the Wylfa Site is scheduled to cease generating electricity in 2014, Trawsfynydd has been defuelled and is undergoing decommissioning. Shaping the Future will help reduce the impact, strengthen the supply chain and help people into sustainable employment.
The project will also focus on training and development opportunities to help attract inward investment into Anglesey, in line with the Energy Island initiative, utilising the skills and knowledge already present in the workforces.
The project is backed with £2.3m from the European Social Fund and funding from the Mon a Menai project through the Welsh Government, £1.2 million from the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and additional funding from Gwynedd County Council and Isle of Anglesey County Council.
Mrs Hart said:
“Helping the north west Wales workforce prepare for the future, grasp new opportunities and secure sustainable, alternative employment is essential to meet the challenges arising from structural change in the regional economy. Our use of EU and other funding demonstrates how we can back up our tailor-made policies with resources to support our ambition to secure a highly skilled and adaptable workforce for a modern economy.”
The scheme will offer one-to-one mentoring and help develop individual action plans which will also address skills gaps and regional need. In addition, it will offer a training programme to retrain and re-skill the workforce, as well as help individuals into jobs or to start up their own ventures within the region.
Judy Craske, Project Director, Shaping the Future, said:
“Shaping the Future is an exemplar of how the public and private sectors can work together to pre-emptively address structural employment shifts and boost the diversity of regional economies.
"At a time of national and global shortages in key technical skills and engineering expertise, North West Wales offers a unique concentration of scarce and sought after skills for employers to tap into.
"We are delighted to launch a programme combining economic regeneration with macro-economic talent management, a programme to future proof the skills of key employees in the region.”