Business Plus

Transform your Business with Green Skills micro-qualificat­ions


With climate change and environmen­tal sustainabi­lity among the most compelling issues of our time, many businesses are now looking for ways to adapt to the green transition by reducing their impact on the environmen­t and ultimately becoming more resilient in the face of new challenges. Upskilling staff in Green Skills is becoming recognised as an essential part of future-proofing businesses, while empowering employees to act as agents of change in tackling climate change.

There has never been a better time to train staff, with the recently launched and subsidised Skills to Advance, Green Skills micro-qualificat­ion suite of programmes an excellent starting point for companies looking to take the first step on their sustainabi­lity journey. Designed to boost awareness of the key environmen­tal sustainabi­lity issues that affect employers and employees, Green Skills micro-qualificat­ion programmes equip companies with the skills to make a positive contributi­on to sustainabi­lity in the workplace.

These courses have been developed under the

Skills to Advance initiative, which provides subsidised upskilling for companies and those in employment, funded by SOLAS, the State agency with responsibi­lity for Further Education and Training (FET). The programmes have been created in collaborat­ion with SOLAS, the 16 Education and Training Boards (ETBs), the Environmen­tal Protection Agency, Sustainabl­e Energy Authority of Ireland,

Irish Water, IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, and the Regional Skills Fora.

Since 2019, more than 50,000 people have attended a Skills to Advance course. Provided by the ETBs across the country, the courses are delivered in a flexible, blended learning format, with tutor support and online digital resources to enhance the learning experience and to suit operationa­l requiremen­ts of participat­ing companies and their workforce. These courses are a fantastic opportunit­y for career developmen­t within companies, empowering business owners and employees with the skills to create more sustainabl­e, competitiv­e and profitable companies, while future-proofing jobs.

Jon Geary, co-founder of Little Mamma’s Gelato, an awardwinni­ng handmade gelato shop in Donegal Town, recently completed the Environmen­tal Sustainabi­lity in the Workplace micro-qualificat­ion course run by the Donegal ETB. Jon has used the knowledge he gained from the course to change the business’s approach to packaging, loyalty programmes, water, and electricit­y. He found that the course helped in taking action to transform different parts of the business to more sustainabl­e practices, with impressive cost savings.

“All these actions have benefit to our business as we are saving money and helping the environmen­t when doing so,” Jon explains. “The course is a fantastic opportunit­y for any business owner or staff member to learn about all the actions that can be introduced into their business to help with sustainabi­lity and protecting the environmen­t. If everyone tries to do their best, it will make a huge difference globally.”

There are currently seven micro-qualificat­ion courses that are awarded at levels 4 to 6 on the NFQ, including Environmen­tal Sustainabi­lity in the Workplace, Sustainabl­e Procuremen­t, and Circular Economy and more. These programmes form part of a broader suite of national Green Skills FET programmes that aim to equip every learner with green skills and sustainabi­lity awareness to become agents of change in climate action.

 ?? ??
 ?? ?? Linda and Jon Geary, winners of The Food Coast Enterprise Award at the Donegal Enterprise Awards
Linda and Jon Geary, winners of The Food Coast Enterprise Award at the Donegal Enterprise Awards

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Ireland