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About Connecting Opportunities

Connecting Opportunities is a project that works with new migrants to develop their skills and opportunities to find work and be part of the local community. 

Organisations that specialise in working with migrants are working together to offer tailored support, cultural orientation, English language classes and other training across West Yorkshire and part of North Yorkshire [Craven, Harrogate, Selby and York].

We're also creating opportunities for local people to be volunteer mentors and befrienders, and for local employers to provide work placements to help people get a foothold in the job market.

Connecting Opportunities is funded by the European Social Fund and the National Lottery, through the Big Lottery Fund. 

There are ten partner organisations in Connecting Opportunities; Migration Yorkshire is the lead partner.

Why did we set up Connecting Opportunities?

We want to support the most vulnerable and marginalised new migrants in Leeds City Region to integrate and to increase their employability and become economically active members of the wider community. We recognise that some of the skills, strengths and potential of new migrants could remain untapped if we do not take action to address some of the many barriers they can face. 

We hope to engage with approximately 1000 migrants over the 2 years of the project [2017-2019].

Some of the things that are special about our service

  • We tailor our support to each individual.
  • You will get the same service, wherever you live in Leeds City Region.
  • We offer English language classes for up to 12 months if required.
  • There is specialist mental health and wellbeing support available.
  • We aim to be inclusive of the perspectives and contributions of women.
  • Participants help to influence the project.

You can read about the experiences of some of our participants here: Wellbeing is the way to work for Yorkshire migrants

Our first 9 months 

Connecting Opportunities opened its doors at the beginning of July 2017. 

By the end of March 2018:

  • 10% of participants are in a job, work placement or further education
  • 32% are making the most of befriending or mental health and well-being support
  • 20% of ESOL learners have progressed to higher level English
  • the service is benefitting all ages and genders: 23% of participants are aged under 21 or over 55, while 56% are female

What difference will Connecting Opportunities make?

We hope that, as a result of our service:

  • Participants will feel more confident, speak better English and have a greater understanding of the British workplace.
  • Through employing new migrants and offering placement opportunities, local employers will know more about the communities living locally, will feel supported to connect with new potential employees and will promote economic well-being in some of the most economically-deprived areas of the region.
  • There will be increased integration and understanding between local communities and new migrants.





Page last updated: 03/08/2018 12:21:54

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