Louth Leader Partnership Company and the Department of Social Protection have just completed another successful Kickstart Programme. The unique Kickstart programme is specifically designed by Louth Leader Partnership Company to assist young unemployed individuals identify a progression route into employment, self-employment or education opportunities. 17 unemployed individuals aged between 18 and 32 years attended the full-time nine week training initiative which took place in Muirhevnamor Community Centre.

At the presentation ceremony on Thursday 18th May 2017, participants Naomi Quigley and Kenneth Omoh eloquently explained to the audience how much they benefitted from the computer upskilling, personal development, intensive interview training, career preparation, confidence building, art, decorative painting, manual handling, CPR, maths, English, first aid and driver theory training. It was highlighted that the talks throughout the programme from experts on drug and alcohol addiction, prison experience, suicide prevention and the juvenile criminal justice system impacted significantly on all the participants.

Chief Executive Officer of Louth Leader Partnership Ciaran Reid thanked the Department of Protection for their continued commitment to the Kickstart programme and praised the participants for their outcomes. He encouraged the participants to continue to use all of the services that Louth Leader Partnership has on offer to them. Representatives from the Department of Social Protection Aidan Jennings and Bernie Judge along with their Dundalk Manager Ann Keeley all commended the participants on their efforts and their progressions while assuring them that the Department of Social Protection will continue to support individuals who were now progressing onto the First Step Internship Programme.

Closing the event, Ina McCrumlish, Project Co-ordinator outlined how proud she was of every participant and of the tutoring team. She thanked everyone for their dedication and commitment which she explained was evident in the many progressions attained. On completion of the Kickstart Programme some participants are now progressing onto the First Step Internship Programmes in Woodies, Park Café, CTI and Bellingham Caste. Others are now returning to full-time education while others are now awaiting the results of interviews for full-time employment. Another participant is now gainfully employed on a full-time basis and a young Dundalk man now has the opportunity to commence a formalised painting apprenticeship programme commencing next week. 
The next Kickstart Programme will take place in Dundalk in September 2017.

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