The Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton, T.D. last month launched Diageo Ireland’s Learning for Life initiative at a special ceremony in the Guiness Storehouse. Learning for Life is a new programme that seeks to provide real employment opportunities in the hospitality and tourism industry for young people in Dublin 8. Learning for Life helps get young people off the live register, and equips them with strong skills that are transferable to the workplace.
June 12th marked the completion of a 7 week training programme by the participants in the Guinness Storehouse. In the next phase of the programme, the 14 participants will embark on work experience with partners in the hospitality and tourism industries in hotels, bars and restaurants.
Speaking at the launch, Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton said:
“The Department of Social Protection has been delighted to work closely with Diageo Ireland on Learning for Life. Diageo Ireland has shown a commitment to empowering young people in the local Dublin 8 community. The focus is on finding meaningful and sustainable solutions to youth unemployment, which I believe Diageo Ireland are doing through Learning for Life. Participants in this programme spent 7 weeks in the Guinness Storehouse acquiring a range of skills from bar tendering, to customer services and much more. Following this training, they will now embark on work experience in partner organisations in the hospitality industry.
“While Diageo Ireland is supporting young people in Dublin 8, they are also working towards supporting the hospitality industry, where an employment gap currently exists. If we are to boost employment and continue to move towards full economic recovery we must support this sector through the provision of skilled employees. Tourism and hospitality are key objectives of our economic recovery and initiatives like Learning for Life are vital to support these industries.
“I want to extend special congratulations to the participants of the Learning for Life who exemplify the spirit of young people in Ireland today, displaying a commitment to bettering their skills and making a valuable contribution to their workplace, when given the right opportunity. While we have made good progress in tackling youth unemployment in Ireland, it remains too high, and we need to constantly improve our supports and services for jobseekers seeking to improve their skills. ”
Also speaking at the launch was David Smith, Country Director for Diageo Ireland:
“Diageo Ireland is proud of St James’s Gates’s long history in the heart of Dublin and of the Guinness legacy, a legacy built on developing a sustainable business that also gives back to the community. Today we mark the first phase of the Learning for Life programme, a new initiative that is all about empowering young people who all live in the shadow of St. James’s Gate Brewery. Learning for Life provides participants with an opportunity to obtain the skills they need to get a job in the hospitality and tourism industry. They have all worked extremely hard over the past few weeks and have become a source of massive inspiration to all of us here with the enthusiasm they have shown since day one.
“The Learning for Life programme was developed closely with Minister Joan Burton and the staff of the Department of Social Protection. The level of engagement with the Department must be seen as measure of Minister Burton’s commitment is to finding meaningful and sustainable solutions to youth unemployment.”
Learning for Life is being piloted by Diageo Ireland in Dublin 8 this year. Participants in the programme have received training in a variety of areas including:
Partners in the hospitality and tourism industry in which the participants will be gaining work experience include: