BUSINESS SKILLS FOR PARENTS AT TAMESIDE CHILDREN’S CENTRES

BUSINESS SKILLS FOR PARENTS AT TAMESIDE CHILDREN’S CENTRES

A DECENT job is well known as being good for your pocket. What’s less well known is that it can be good for your family’s health too.

Studies show that if the parents of young families can get work that suits them, perhaps by going self-employed, their children have a better chance of achieving success in education. In fact, the health of the whole family improves.

What’s more, research conducted for Tameside Council and Tameside and Glossop Care Together showed that parents using children’s centres have a great desire to work for themselves so that they can spend more time with their families.

The result of this was a six-week course called Building Business Skills for Parents (BBSP) which took the innovative approach of integrating health with employment and skills activity. Trainers came from a wide range of backgrounds, including council agencies, partners and local businesses.

Cllr Ged Cooney, Tameside Council’s executive member for economic growth, commented: “A lot of parents want flexibility within their work so that they have the freedom to spend more time with their families. They want their children to get the best possible start in life.

“The success of Building Business Skills for Parents shows that we have a rich vein of entrepreneurial talent in Tameside. If we can enable it to thrive, that can only be good for the borough’s future prosperity.”

Sessions took place at Hyde Children’s Centre, Old Road, to enable parents to access training at a convenient site they already knew. Parents from a wide range of backgrounds attended, many of whom had no enterprise experience or had been out of work for a number of years.

Some of the parents are already setting up their own businesses including holistic therapy, self-defence training, bookkeeping, and making and selling craft items.

A Tameside Council spokesperson said: “Overall, the first pilot cohort has been a great success – not only in terms of helping parents feel more confident and knowledgeable about setting up a business, but also by demonstrating the great value that can be added when public-sector agencies and local businesses work together.”

Judi Kelly, owner of Inspire Consultants of Dukinfield, who took two sessions, added: “Meeting such a wide range of people with great enthusiasm was an amazing experience.

“Delivering taster sessions can be challenging but the ones I was involved with were not just informative for the people attending but the experiences they shared were helpful to all present.

“It was a great way of getting people started on their journey to having their own business.”

Kate Benson from Tameside and Glossop Care Together – who funded the programme – added: “With the BBSP pilot project, Tameside Public Health and the Early Years Delivery Model Steering Group have been testing a new approach to service delivery by working in partnership with colleagues in Employment and Skills – as well as local businesses and organisations – to meet a shared health and employment need. We’re already seeing great results from this approach which we will replicate and expand on with future BBSP cohorts.”

BBSP would not have been possible without the support of local businesses and organisations. Mediskills, Inspire Consultants Dukinfield, 4Lunch, Your Tax Shop, Business Growth Hub, Tameside ACE, Social Media Makes Sense, The Crafters Festival, People Plus and New Charter all joined Tameside Council and Tameside and Glossop Care Together, to deliver the pilot course – showing how local collaboration can create real opportunities for Tameside residents.