Ørsted has opened the second round of its East Coast Skills Fund for applications, with GBP 55,000 available for experienced organisations that can develop and deliver Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM)- related training or education courses, a one-off event, or a programme of targeted events.
The full GBP 55,000 may be awarded to one organisation, or split between a number of groups that apply. The minimum grant organisations can apply for is GBP 10,000, and the closing date for applications is 12 September. A further GBP 20,000 will again be targeted at colleges within the Fund’s coastal area of benefit, and will be used to help finance local students who are unable to access traditional funding streams for support.
The Skills Fund forms part of the Ørsted's GBP 465,000 East Coast Community Fund 20 year annual commitment and is part of the community engagement programme for Ørsted’s Hornsea Project One and Race Bank offshore wind farms, which are located off the Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and North Norfolk coast.
The Fund is being administered by the independent grant-making charity GrantScape.
"As a predominately engineering-based company, we recognise the importance of developing STEM skills, especially in the areas where we will be operating for a number of years," said Natasha Nanuck, Ørsted’s Senior Stakeholder Advisor. "Following an extremely positive and high level of interest to the first round of the Skills Fund last year, we are delighted to announce the opportunity is now open again."
In the first round of funding, Grimsby Institute received GBP 41,675 for an annual programme of events designed to excite, inform and spark curiosity to over 2,000 students in junior, secondary, higher education across the coastal zones of North East Lincolnshire, North Lincolnshire, East Riding of Yorkshire and East Lincolnshire. Part of this funding went towards a careers event held on 12 June, including a STEM Village specifically to inspire young people into STEM careers.
The second award of GBP 13,325 went to Alderman Peel High School in Norfolk to develop a sustainable STEM development and outreach project over a two-year period where STEM teachers will work with employers to embed real life project activities into the National Curriculum.
As well as contributing GBP 465,000 a year to the East Coast Community Fund, Ørsted has also partnered with Teach First and supports the organisation on a number of challenging targets to improve the teacher attraction and retention, and pupil progression in Grimsby, Hull and Merseyside.