Thousands seek help to find work

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More than 3800 people in Dumfries and Galloway met Skills Development Scotland staff last year looking for help to get training or a job.

SDS website My World of Work also proved a key point of support with more than 230,000 people across Scotland now registered to use the interactive service.

SDS has been transforming the way in which it supports people to reflect a background of higher youth unemployment, shifting opportunities, more flexible career paths and the digital world.

David Cameron, head of career management skills at SDS explained: “With so many changes to the economy over recent years, it was timely to question whether our services would effectively meet the changed circumstances of tomorrow. We had to take stock of what our customers need and to make any changes that would help them in the world of work.

“Our new approach is based on extensive international research, best practice and extensive consultation, and we are giving priority to those at greatest risk of not getting in to employment at all. We are also helping young people to develop the skills needed to deal with career choices at every point of their lives.”

While people of all ages still have access to SDS’s direct support, the skills body now focuses more intensively on those requiring most assistance to make an effective transition into learning, training or work.

Cameron added: “For many people it may seem like too big a shift in how we are supporting people but it was necessary to modernise our service to ensure people have the best possible chance of having a successful future.

“We are confident our new approach will provide the vital support people need to take control of their futures and to help them to make a positive contribution to Scotland’s economy.”