News

ESF funding rounds are opening in London and Greater Manchester.

The London Programme will continue to support people with complex needs to gain skills and find (or remain in) work, education or training. These are Londoners who already face disadvantage, and who are likely to be further disadvantaged by the impact of COVID-19. 

The European Association of Service providers for Persons with Disabilities (EASPD) has launched its first snapshot report on the impact of COVID-19 on social services for persons with disabilities across Europe. The report identifies the main challenges experienced by such service providers, as well as a general overview of the availability of support services in April 2020.

BASE has set up regional Linkedin forums for members to keep in touch and support each other. The forums are for staff of member orgaisations and can be accessed though the following links:

The government has published details of financial support available to schools, further education, apprenticeship providers and special post-16 providers.

A new ‘support finder’ tool will help businesses and self-employed people across the UK to quickly and easily determine what financial support is available to them during the coronavirus pandemic. Coronavirus (COVID-19) support is available to employers and the self-employed. You may be eligible for loans, tax relief and cash grants.

The finder tool on GOV.UK will ask business owners to fill out a simple online questionnaire, which can take minutes to complete, and they will then be directed to a list of all the financial support they may be eligible for.

RNIB are providing free on-line training to Pre-Employment Providers to help them understand how to support job seekers who are blind and partially sighted.

This 40 minute training session will enable participants to gain a greater understanding in how to support jobseekers who are blind and partially sighted.

During the training you will learn more about: 

Social Enterprise UK (SEUK) has put together a website for enterprises dealing with the impact of coronavirus. The website contains the latest resources, advice and support services, including webinars from leading voices within the sector.

They have a series of webinars this week. These are all free to sign-up too and the recordings will be available on this site. Each webinar is an hour long with plenty of time to ask questions. 

DWP is making changes to the Test & Learn Dynamic Purchasing System (T+L DPS). The existing T+L DPS will close on 23 March and from 27 March 2020 the T+L DPS will be transferred to be run through PQQ_28831. A guidance note is attached explaining the changes. Organisations currently registered on the T+L DPS will have their details automatically transferred to the new system.

DWP has announced that it is postponing publication of the tender for the Local Supported Employment trailblazer. This is due to the coronavirus and its impact on services.

The tender had beeen due to go live this week. We'll update you when we hear more.

BASE will be postponing all regional forums and training events until further notice in the light of the coronavirus restrictions. Office functions will continue as normal and certificate learners can continue to receive support by contacting their assessor by email or phone.

We have been asked for advice regarding the provision of workplace support but there are no easy answers. Clearly, the welfare of service staff and clients has to be a priority and services should support those customers through risk assessment where they are vulnerable because of their health. 

Employees who are shielding in line with public health guidance (or need to stay home with someone who is shielding) can be furloughed if they are unable to work from home. The government have confirmed that shielding employees can be placed on furlough even if the employer has work for them to do.

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