This post is part of the VET Gazette 2
Phil Heffernan
Area Co-ordinator


The 2016 Census results identified 5 unemployment blackspots in Cork city. Following consultation with organisations and groups in these communities in Cork city, 7 programmes were identified for development and implementation including 2 with Northside Community Enterprises NCE:

  1. Northside Community Enterprises – Building Sustainable Futures/ Construction Skills
  2. Northside Community Enterprises – Workwise Skills

Both programmes were broken into 3 phases: 

Pre-Engagement Strategy Phase – including recruitment, assessment, induction, literacy and numeracy support, personal development and guidance. 

Learning Strategy Phase – Development of the appropriate skills set for the learners, with wide and varied taster and QQI accredited components on offer.

 Progression Strategy Phase – Assist and guide participants in developing a progression plan into further education, training or employment with the support of Adult Guidance Services and CETB staff to guide on progression options.                                      

Soft Skills and Resilience Training were provided throughout the programme as a core pillar to keep learners focused and engaged.                         Transition coaching was provided to the cohort of learners who were job ready and ready to move to further & higher education.


Benefits All course participants experienced the benefits of gaining new skills and building confidence and linking with guidance to set goals and create pathways to future training or employment. The course suited participants who wanted to gain experience in learning environments for the first time and those who had higher levels of education and work experience to discover their strengths and find the right pathway that would support those skills and strengths. By linking with NCE and CETB staff, tutors and CETB Adult Guidance Service, the participants were aware of the options and supports available to them for education and training progression. CETB provided real links and pathways for progression. By working closely with CETB staff the participants have been informed and supported around the many possible options and pathways for progression.