HARTE provides job opportunities for unemployed

OVER 70 people from Belfast and Lisburn have completed the latest round of the HARTE programme which provides job training opportunities in the hospitality and retail sector for the long-term unemployed.

The Hospitality and Retail Training for Employment (HARTE) initiative is jointly funded by Belfast City Council, Lisburn City Council and the European Social Fund and is supported by the Department for Employment and Learning (DEL).

HARTE was launched in Belfast in January 2009 and the previous round of the programme enabled 90 people to gain employment in the hospitality and retail sector. Over 190 participants on the programme have also gained recognised qualifications and completed personal development courses.

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The new round of the programme which got underway in November was open to unemployed people in both Belfast and Lisburn City Council areas. Five training programmes were delivered – three of which were in conjunction with employers such as Fitzers (catering contractors for Titanic Belfast); JRS (contractors for the MAC in Belfast) and the Premier Inn hotel in Lisburn. The programme was delivered for both councils by Time Associates, GEMS NI and Belfast Met.

At a special Celebration Event recently at the City Hall, the 75 participants who completed the latest round of HARTE were awarded with certificates, presented by Councillor Guy Spence from Belfast City Council’s Development Committee.

Among the speakers at the ceremony were representatives from Belfast and Lisburn City Councils and from the hospitality and retail sector.

To find out more about HARTE or Belfast City Council’s other business programmes, contact the council’s Economic Development Unit on 028 9050 0504 or visit the council website at www.belfastcity.gov.uk/businessprogrammes