Gateway participants presented with certificates

Gateway participants presented with certificates
Sam Matthews @SamAMatthewsKP

People who completed their contracts under the council's Gateway Scheme were presented with certificates at a recent ceremony in County Hall.

The Gateway Scheme is provided by local authorities countrywide. It's an opportunity for people who are long-term unemployed to work for 19.5 hours a week over a 22-month period.

Kilkenny County Council has provided 71 placements to date, 39 of which have completed their contracts, and 13 of which left to take up employment in the private sector or to return to education. There are currently 19 people still on the scheme.

In addition, the council provided temporary employment to 13 people following completion of their Gateway contracts.

Participants have been engaged in a variety of work — building walls and pathways, landscaping and tree maintenance, tidying up village approach roads, cleaning graveyards, information technology, marketing, tourism promotion and clerical work.

During the time spent on the scheme most people have had a positive experience.

They learned new skills, or honed their existing skills, and took part in health and safety courses and received certificates. They were working as part of a team or on their own, but under the umbrella of Kilkenny County Council, doing good quality work in the community.