The University of Washington has published a case study looking at how the Digital Community Programme is addressing the issue of long-term unemployment in Dublin's inner-city.
The programme focusing on the provision of IT access and training to people living in the inner city flat complexes and provides training and support from basic digital literacy to full industry certification such as IC3 and Microsoft Office Specialist.
"The Digital Community project offers two types of education programs. First, the broad portfolio of ICT courses and network of public access points serve many inner city residents, providing basic access and strengthening life skills and job skills. Roughly 2,000 are served each year either as drop-in users or formal trainees at the 23 centers across Dublin. Second, students that demonstrate a commitment to the program over time become eligible for intensive job training that involves advanced ICT training, then teacher training, and culminates in a well-paid on-the-job ICT apprenticeship – funded by the project. Roughly one hundred graduates have followed this track all the way to the apprenticeship.
The apprenticeship is intended to provide employment and to establish a proven track record in a work environment. According to Peter Byrne, the project director, the on-the-job training program is built around the widely recognized axiom among job hunters: “it is easier to find a job when you already have a job.” The simplicity of Peter’s approach is intended to provide strategic handholds that give trainees a legitimate chance to climb out of generational unemployment and poverty, and the crime and violence that are never far behind."
You can download the full case study here.
The Digital Community Programme is supported by Microsoft's Unlimited Potential programme.