Charities among organisations to share £21m funding to run ‘digital skills bootcamps’

The charities Code your Future and Resume Foundation are among organisations to share £21m in combined authority funding to tackle digital exclusion in the West Midlands.

They are among ten organisations, including Capita and the Skills Network, to run the ‘digital skills bootcamps’.

The funding, for the next three years, has been provided by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) and aims to improve the digital skills of 4,000 people across the region.

Its aim is to develop skills for people to obtain new digital roles or promotions within existing roles.

The ‘bootcamps’ will be free and focus on digital skills such as coding, online marketing and cybersecurity.

It is available to unemployed people as well as those seeking a career change or those looking to develop their digital skills within their job.

The scheme has been piloted in the area and has already trained 2,000 adults. One of these 30 pilot bootcamps saw just under two thirds (62%) of learners “secure a positive outcome”, according to the WMCA.

Other organisations involved are the University of Birmingham, Generation You Employed, School of Code, Tech Talent, LEAD and Twin Training International.

“We know that training in the skills of the future that employers want and need is a crucial way to help people bounce back into employment quickly, and technology is an area of huge employment possibilities that we must help people get the right skills in,” said West Midlands mayor Andy Street.

“The sector offers new, exciting, and future-proof jobs, and digital bootcamps are a great way of helping local people get involved.”

In September a report by the charity Good Things Foundation called for combined authorities across England to ensure they work closely with local charities to boost digital inclusion in their areas.

Among examples of good practice is Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s digital inclusion taskforce, which is made up of local and national government, charity, academic and industry representative.

Combined authorities are made up of a number of local councils to work together on region wide projects. The WMCA is made up of 18 local councils and three local enterprise partnerships.

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