The Greater Merseyside Learning Providers’ Federation (GMLPF) has endorsed a new grant which will be made available to Liverpool City Region SMEs recruiting apprentices.
The Apprenticeship Grant for Employers (AGE) scheme will be available from August 1 2016 to eligible small and medium businesses within Liverpool City Region who recruit new apprentices who are aged between 16-24.
As part of the Liverpool City Region Devolution agreement the Combined Authority now controls the AGE for businesses based in Liverpool City Region. The area’s Combined Authority has become one of only five across the country to win devolved funding to deliver a grant scheme.
Up to £4,000 will be available for SMEs employing local apprentices depending on the age of the apprentice and the level of apprenticeship being undertaken.
The AGE programme replaces the national scheme which offered £1,500 to employers with under 50 staff, subject to meeting the criteria. The enhanced Liverpool City Region scheme means employers who employ up to 249 employees are now eligible. The devolved scheme allows the city region to set its own level of grant funding with its own eligibility criteria.
At an event this month, GMLPF partnered with the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority to announce the funding and explain the benefits of the grant to over 40 learning providers in the region.
GMLPF say the improved funding made available will hopefully have a positive impact on apprenticeship starts and highlight the benefits of recruiting apprentices.
Gareth Jones, Apprenticeships Strategy Manager at GMLPF, says: “Here at GMLPF we support this fantastic new initiative and welcome the additional funding that the Liverpool City Region has chosen to give employers. This programme is far more beneficial to employers in the city region, whom could get £2,500 more than is currently available under the national scheme.
“The devolving of the AGE grant could create significant opportunities for Liverpool City Region SMEs and help the region’s young people take that all-important step in to employment. I urge all employers to find out more about the AGE scheme and consider recruiting an apprentice.”
Employers must pay apprentices the National Minimum Wage in order to be eligible and have not recruited an apprentice in the past six months. The grant is available from August 1 2016 until December 31 2016, or until all the funds are expanded.
To find out more and to check your eligibility, go to: http://www.lcrskillsforgrowth.org.uk/our-work/age-apprenticeship-grant-for-employers to download a provider pack. To apply for the Apprenticeship Grant for employers contact firstname.lastname@example.org
"The devolving of the AGE grant could create significant opportunities for Liverpool City Region SMEs and help the regions young people take that all-important step in to employment."
Gareth Jones, Strategy Manager at GMLPF
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