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The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority Announce Partnership with National Learning Network

11 February 2011
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The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) has today (Friday, 11th February 2011) announced the official launch of a partnership with National Learning Network (NLN) at an event in the Radisson Hotel, Dublin. The partnership will see six National Learning Network students accessing work placement programmes at SFPA offices nationwide over the next 12 months.

National Learning Network is the training and employment division of the Rehab Group and many of those participating in the programme would have previously found it difficult to access employment due to accident, illness or disability.

The partnership programme, which is already in operation in a number of SFPA offices throughout the country, has enabled National Learning Network students to gain valuable work experience and to avail of a wide range of external training opportunities with the SFPA.

Welcoming the official launch of the partnership, Marie Kelly, Director of Training and Employment Services, Rehab Group, says: “At a time when the economy is in recession, it’s very exciting that an organisation such as the SFPA places such an importance on providing opportunities for people who may otherwise find it difficult to secure experience in the workplace. National Learning Network provides ongoing support to all our students on employer-based training programmes. However, what sets the SFPA apart from many other employers is its commitment to providing structured training in a supportive working environment. Staff members within the organisation take time to mentor the students and to assess their needs, providing training opportunities for the students in areas where their skills could be further developed.

“The partnership between SFPA and National Learning Network is a wonderful model for the provision of training opportunities and work placements for those at a disadvantage in the labour market. It is our hope that other organisations, particularly state-sponsored bodies, will see the success of this partnership and introduce similar work placement programmes.”

Sandra NĂ­ Artaigh, Human Resources Director at the SFPA stated that: “From a Human Resources perspective, we have been presented with a wonderful opportunity to not only develop our own personnel through the mentorship aspect of the partnership, but also to make a valuable contribution to our local communities. Our partnership with NLN is significant from a number of perspectives. The programme affords all candidates training placements in mainstream integrated settings. Each individual placement is then subsequently strengthened with high level support that is provided over a period of time. This, in turn, facilitates individual development from a personal, professional and occupational level. It is because of this level of support and the long-term nature of the placement, that each person is developed even further and supported to re-enter the workplace. It is our pleasure to be associated with NLN and to be part of this innovative programme.”

Peter Whelan, Chairman of the SFPA, welcomed the partnership stating: “Our hope into the future is to develop a solid and mutually beneficial partnership between the SFPA and National Learning Network. The initiative has been received exceptionally well with a number of  staff volunteering to be advocates and mentors for both the programme and people working with us on the NLN placements.”

ENDS

For further press information, please contact Dara Duffy, PR Manager, Rehab on (01) 205 7268; email dara.duffy@rehab.ie  or Eleanor Buckley, Communications Manager, Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority on 023 88593 46/ 087 920 3658 or email eleanor.buckley@sfpa.ie.

Note for Editors:

About the SFPA
The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority is the independent statutory body, legally charged with the State’s sea-fisheries law enforcement functions. The Authority enforces the EU Common Fisheries Policy and sea-fisheries law generally and food safety law relating to fish and fishery products.

About National Learning Network
National Learning Network is Ireland's largest non-government training organisation with over 50 training locations nationwide. National Learning Network offers over 40 different training courses and is a FETAC accredited provider.