WorkAbility: Inclusive Pathways to Employment Programme

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The WorkAbility: Inclusive Pathways to Employment Programme is a new programme co-financed by the EU Employment, Inclusion, Skills, and Training Programme (EIST) 2021-2027 and the Department of Social Protection (DSP). The programme will provide funding support to local, regional, and national projects that are focused on achieving improved employment outcomes for people with disabilities through a range of support measures.

The aim of the WorkAbility Programme is to ensure people with disabilities are fully supported to find and maintain employment and organisations which employ programme participants are supported to ensure that their employment is successful.

The Programme will support people with disabilities aged 16 years and over who are currently not work ready and/or are distant from the labour market to gain access to employment. To achieve this, the funding will support projects that provide progressive pathways into employment (including self-employment) through education, training, skills development, and in-work supports for participants based on their needs, their abilities and their potential.

Across the 5-year programme lifetime, this €36 million investment aims to support up to 5,000 people with disabilities to progress their employment ambitions. Projects funded under the WorkAbility Programme will incorporate a strong focus on employer engagement, raising employers’ awareness and building their capacity to recruit, retain and progress people with disabilities in their workforce.

The project implementation period is from 1 January 2024 to 31 December 2028.

  • The maximum grant amount that can be applied for is €200,000 per annum i.e. €1,000,000 over 5 years.  

Please note that  projects do not need to run for the entire 5 years, however a minimum project duration of 3 years does apply. For projects running for a 3-year period they must be completed no later than 31 December 2026.

The Objectives of the Programme are:

  1. To improve the employment prospects of people with disabilities who are currently distant from the labour market.
  2. To build the capacity of employers to recruit, retain and progress people with disabilities within their workforce.
  3. To facilitate new partnerships amongst stakeholders (people with disabilities, disability services, employment services and employers) and new approaches to providing employment supports to people with disabilities.

Organisations eligible to apply as Single or Lead applicant:

An organisation can apply as a single or lead applicant if they have a legal structure and a proven track record of at least three years of successfully working directly with people with disabilities and are one of the following:

  • Community, voluntary, or not-for-profit organisation providing support for people with disabilities as part of their organisation’s objectives.
  • Community, voluntary and not-for-profit organisations providing training, pre-employment and/or employment supports as part of their organisation’s objectives.
  • Non-Statutory bodies with a not-for-profit legal structure funded under Sections 38 and 39 of Health Act 2004.
  • Employer networks with a not-for-profit legal structure.
  • Networks of non-statutory bodies with a not-for-profit legal structure.

Only one application per organisation will be considered. However, local, and regional branches of the same organisation may apply for funding if they have their own separate legal structure.

Organisations not eligible to apply as a Single or Lead applicant:

  • Community, voluntary, or not-for-profit organisation with a legal structure which cannot demonstrate that they have at least three years’ proven experience of working directly with people with disabilities.
  • Community, voluntary and not-for-profit organisations that do not have their own legal structure.
  • Statutory Bodies.
  • For-profit organisations.
  • Private Individuals.
  • Schools.

Please see the Application Guidelines below for more details on eligibility.

Please see the next two tabs (above right) for key application dates, links to register for application support events and FAQs.

Please note that the Application Form and Budget Sheet Template located in the Resources Section below are for illustrative purposes only. All potential applicants must register a Primary Authorised User on the MyPobal Portal to download and submit the official Application Form and Budget Sheet Template.  

All applications must be submitted via the MyPobal Portal by 3pm on 14 September 2023. Applications received by email or post will not be considered.

WorkAbility Resources

Source: https://www.pobal.ie/programmes/workability-inclusive-pathways-to-employment-programme/

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