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Businesses across the Humber are being encouraged to support a project set to boost local economy after research showed more investment is needed to develop people’s skills.

The Humber Local Enterprise Partnership hopes to encourage companies to back its Humber Skills Pledge campaign in light of local and national research which found one fifth of UK economic growth is due to improvements in skills and training.

The pledge aims to get more of the 47,800 unemployed people aged 16 to 64 in the Humber into jobs and work placements as well as encouraging businesses to raise company productivity through investment in workforce skills.

Chair of the Humber LEP Lord Haskins is set to launch the campaign at an event on Friday April 12 at the Willerby Manor Hotel.

He said: “There are some excellent examples of local businesses investing in skills, but as a nation we are not good enough at it and we lag behind the competition.”

“We want to use the Humber Skills Pledge to raise awareness of what skills investment can achieve for businesses, the local economy and local people.  A few relatively small actions, if taken up by enough businesses, can have a very positive impact on their own companies as well as the prospects of people in their local communities.”

The pledge consists of six actions including mentoring a budding entrepreneur, offering an apprenticeship, employing a local graduate, offering a work placement, supporting the development of employability skills and increasing workforce skills.

It is hoped with businesses having the freedom to choose which actions they achieve; take-up in the region is set to be high.

Stuart Griffiths from Jobcentre Plus will also take to the stage to show businesses just how easy finding the right graduate or apprentice can be.

He added: “This campaign is absolutely vital. It is a tough time for businesses and the aim is to show them that there are lots of ready, willing and able organisations ready to jump into action and help them find someone who will bring added value to their company.”

Scunthorpe-based global steel company Tata Steel, which already benefits from investing in apprenticeships as well as skills and training of its workforce, will be paving the way for others by signing up to the pledge on launch day.

Adam Graham, a sixth form student from Archbishop Sentamu Academy who recently undertook a summer internship at local regeneration organisation Esteem, will also share his story.

He said: “Before doing a placement I didn’t think I was going to be able to fulfil my dreams but now I’m planning to go to university and hopefully one day will own my own business.”

“I never thought I would have the confidence to speak in front of hundreds of people as I will be for this event. It has really made me believe I can achieve much more than I ever anticipated.”

To register for a place at the breakfast event on Friday April 12 at 8am visit our event page