€7 million in EU funded projects for Gozo and Malta

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€7 million in EU funded projects for Gozo and MaltaParliamentary Secretary for the EU Presidency 2017 and EU Fund Ian Borg, has announced another three projects – worth around €7 million – under the European Regional and Development Funds (ERDF) – aimed at integrating communities, supporting learning, and improving personal growth.

The first project – INVEST – aims to increase physical infrastructure, in order to be able to provide Vocational Education and Training (VET) to secondary school students.

The project involves the conversion of laboratories in various schools in Gozo and Malta into VET Labs. The investment will involve the setting-up of a total of forty-four VET labs in eleven schools in Malta, and four VET labs in a school in Gozo in the areas of Engineering Technology, Information Technology, Hospitality, and Health and Social Care.

Parliamentary Secretary Borg said that this project will cost more than €5 million, out of which €3 million are EU-funded, and aims to reduce the rate of early school leavers (ESL). More than 3,700 students are envisaged to be supported through this investment.

Another project announced today – worth €567,706, out of which €496,555 are EU-funded – is ‘The establishment of Assistive Technology Centres in Gozo and Malta,’ which aims at facilitating the integration and increase the independence of persons with disabilities.

This includes those who suffer from long-term physical, mental, intellectual, or sensory impairments with the support of Assistive Technology (AT).

This project, Borg said, is estimated to assist around 1,300 persons, and will provide for the establishment of three AT Centres in Malta (MCAST Paola and Mtarfa), and Gozo (Ghajnsielem), which will include assistive technological equipment and software.

The third project is the ‘Centre for the Integration of Vulnerable Persons,’ with a total cost of almost €1 million, out of which €846,186.43 are EU funded through the ERDF Programme. The Centre will support the integration of vulnerable persons within the community through public infrastructure, as well as community-based services, intended to alleviate vulnerable persons out of poverty and social exclusion, and to bring target groups closer to the labour market.

The project will see new infrastructure within the community, which will further enhance service provision in the area. The Centre for Integration will include a Counselling Room, recreational facilities, computer lab, conference room, First-Aid room, meeting room, office space, and outdoor facilities.

Parliamentary Secretary Ian Borg concluded by saying that all three projects aim at supporting people at various stages in their lives, by aiding in their learning experience whilst providing pathways for future employment and life stability.

He thanked the PPCD for their ongoing work, and stated that the Government “is keeping its promise to be close to the community by seeing to their needs and interests.”

Photo: DOI/Clodagh Farrugia O’Neill

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