Media Release: New School Gates initiative gets parents back to work

IT is not often that teachers encourage people to hang about at the school gates but an innovative new project in the south of Glasgow is encouraging just that.

The School Gates Employment Support Initiative aims to increase the amount of employment support available to parents in and around their children’s schools.

Says a spokesperson: “The initiative aims help increase the number of parents in low income families entering employment. Mary McLaughlin – School Gates co-ordinator for the South East, based within Glasgow South East Regeneration Agency (GSERA) – is currently working with parents in Govanhill at Cuthbertson Street Primary School, Gorbals at St Francis Primary School, Toryglen at St Brigids Primary School and Castlemilk at Miller Primary School.

“Since the project, started Mary has assisted many local parents with money and benefits advice including in work benefit checks and debt advice, arranged for non English-speaking parents to get assessed for English classes, put other parents in touch with careers guidance advisors as well as securing voluntary opportunities for others.

“Childcare is often an issue for parents who are considering going back to work so Mary is on hand to source local quality affordable childcare.”

Local parent, Wilma O’ Donovan, was delighted with the service.

She said: “I would like to thank all at GSERA for sorting out my childcare.

“I had managed to secure employment but found sustaining it difficult due to no childcare provision. I was relying on friends and my elderly mother to help out.

“I am now using a superb childcare provider and, thanks to Mary, I secured two days after school care at my sons school.

“Once again, thanks to GSERA for making my employment possible. Childcare is at the very heart of single parents going to work and, without your help, I would not have been able to do this.”

The spokesperson added: “School Gates staff discuss with local parents their ambitions and how to make them a reality.

“There are opportunities to volunteer in the community and gain valuable work experience and learn about the things that matter to local people.

“Parents can try new things out to challenge themselves and build their confidence or take short courses in healthy lifestyles, personal development or training.

“They can even take part in creative arts and work towards a qualification. The programme is designed to help parents identify their goals and take positive steps towards achieving them.

“The assistance Mary can give is wide-ranging and is based on the individual needs of the parents.”

Mary is on hand to speak to anyone who is out of work and wants to move on.

If you would like to find out what the project can offer you please contact Mary direct on 07967 179 174 or 0141 634 1024 or email

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CONTACT: Jenny Clark Marketing and Communications Officer mail: tel: 0141 420 3573 ext. 210 mob: 07787708683 fax: 0141 429 5875 Glasgow South East Regeneration Agency (GSERA) Adelphi Centre, 12 Commercial Road, Glasgow G5 0PQ.

Notes to Editors

1. Glasgow South East Regeneration Agency (GSERA) is one of the leading organisations taking forward the economic and social regeneration of south-east Glasgow.

2. Over the past year, the organisation has delivered an extensive range of services, including employability support to local people, assistance to local businesses and social economy organisations, and property and environmental services.

3. The organisation was established in 2007 following the restructuring of the city’s network of Local Development Companies (LDCs).

The restructuring involved the merger of the eight previous companies to form five Regeneration Agencies across the city – where the operating boundaries for each agency were aligned with those of the five Community Planning Partnership/ local Community Health and Care Partnership areas throughout Glasgow.

4. The network of Local Regeneration Agencies (LRAs) play an integral part in the regeneration and physical development of their local area, and are a key vehicle for the delivery of employment and regeneration services across the city.

This is underpinned by five ‘key messages’ that highlight the joint aims of the network:

* Regenerating Glasgow – We provide integrated economic and social development rooted in the communities we serve, improving local people’s chance, choices and the environment where they live.

* Effective for business – We work closely with employers to meet their business development and recruitment needs and help their business prosper.

* Working with you and for you – We work face to face with each person who uses our services to help them build the better life they want through improving their health, increasing their skills and helping them find a job.

* City wide co-operation – We are the most co-ordinated and effective city-wide regeneration and employment network.

* Partnership leaders  – Every LRA leads a consortium of local and city-wide organisations to provide the best possible opportunities and support for our communities.

5. Offices GSERA’s registered office is in Castlemilk with five other local offices in Gorbals, Govanhill, East Pollokshileds, Toryglen and Shawlands. Castlemilk Glenwood Business Centre, 21 Glenwood Place, Glasgow G45 9UH Gorbals Adelphi Centre, 12 Commerical Road, Glasgow G5 0PQ Govanhill 514 Victoria Road, Glasgow G42 8BG East Pollokshileds 419 Shields Roadm Glasgow G41 1NY Toryglen Toryglen Community Base Unit 34, Prospecthill Square, Glasgow G42 0LE Shawlands Shawlands Arcade, 124 Kilmarnock Road, Glasgow, G41 3NN GSERA operates an employability outreach service in various local housing association including New Gorbals Housing Association, Southside Housing Association, Govanhill Housing Association, Cathcart and District Housing Association as well as in local Job Centre Plus offices Further information

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Contact: Jenny Clark
Phone: 0141 420 3573 ext. 210 mob: 07787708683