Pamela Latimer Training and Education Manager from LWL, LWL CEO Louise Lovett, Program Mentor Karen Reilly, Eileen Finan Project Co-Ordinator from Lus na Gréine and Development Worker Irene Reeves.
Longford Women’s Link Retail Skills Programme concluded at LWL on Thursday last, with the hosting of a graduation ceremony for students who participated in the programme supported by the Ulster Bank Skills and Opportunities Fund.
The programme which commenced in September 2017 provided education, training, mentoring and support opportunities for women in County Longford who sought to pursue a career in retail.
Initially, the focus was on recruiting approximately 20 women from Longford to participate and avail of accreditation and mentoring opportunities.
Accredited training was delivered by LWL at two venues in Longford – Longford Womens Link and Lus Na Gréine FRC.
Speaking at the graduation ceremony, Retail Skills Programme Mentor Karen Reilly outlined how the programme grew significantly, stating, “By the end of May, over 50 women had participated on this hugely successful programme with 31 women from LWL and Lus na Gréine FRC achieving their QQI Level 4 award at the ceremony tonight.
“This is such a huge achievement for everyone concerned and we’re very proud of all our learners.”
LWL’s Retail Skills Programme was one of nine national projects who were successful in the 2016 round of the Ulster Bank Skills and Opportunities Fund.
Deputy CEO Tara Farrell explained, “The programme was designed to enable LWL to expand our delivery of education and training opportunities and to provide accredited training and career mentoring, allowing us to continue to support women in Longford to develop real and meaningful career pathways.
“We are delighted that of the 50 participants, 7 have already secured employment, which is a fantastic testament to the programme.”
Speaking at the awards ceremony last week, LWL’s CEO Louise Lovett acknowledged the support of Ulster Bank and paid tribute to the commitment of the students on the programme.
“The outcomes of the programme have far exceeded our expectations but this is down to the calibre of the people here who have all embraced the programme wholeheartedly,” she said.
Louise also paid tribute to Programme Mentor Karen Reilly whose dedication and commitment was an integral part of the programme’s success and highlighted the significant input from LWL’s Education and Training Business Development Manager, Pamela Latimer.
Graduate Tara McGoey was one of four students who spoke on the night and she outlined the hugely positive impact the programme had on her and her fellow students.