Enterprise idea will boost jobs

Annette Tonner (front right) with Michael Matheson MSP and other guests at last Thursday's launch
Annette Tonner (front right) with Michael Matheson MSP and other guests at last Thursday's launch

A recruitment and training firm with the community at its heart has been launched.

Forth Valley Community Enterprise CIC welcomed Falkirk West MSP Michael Matheson to its opening in Manor Street.

The brainchild of employability and welfare to work expert Annette Tonner, it will tackle unemployment and poverty by offering the jobless training and the chance of SQA qualifications and those in work the opportunity to add to their skills to improve their career prospects.

As a Community Interest Company working with agencies including voluntary sector support group CVS Falkirk and Falkirk Delivers, it will be able to plough profits back into giving more people the chance of stepping onto the jobs ladder.

The need to meet the demand from the hospitality, call centre and customer service industries for more recruits will drive the business forward, but ambitious plans also include offering debt and benefit advice and unique drugs and alcohol programmes.

Annette said: “This has been two years in the making and an amazing journey. The launch was a 100 per cent success and we’re looking to the future. We will always put people before profit and ensure we enhance the lives of the people in our community.”

Enterprise is an opportunity

Annette Tonner from Falkirk is one of the new firm’s three directors.

The CIC aims to be self-sustaining with every penny of profit from its services re-invested in providing more people with the opportunity to work.

The company has SQA Centre Accreditation to offer SQA qualifications and received funding from the Bank of Scotland’s School for Social Entrepreneur’s start-up programme.

Local businesses donated £5000 in materials and labour to convert the office premises at 71 Manor Street.