STRABANE Training Services (STS) is planning to create 20 new jobs and expand its operations with the opening of a new crèche this spring.
The development, based at STS’s Ballycolman Road premises, has been made possible by a six-figure loan from the Ulster Community Investment Trust (UCIT), one of the UK’s leading providers of social finance.
Mia Coyle, genera lmanager, STS, said that the children’s day care facility will accommodate over 50 children and be a hub for vocational childcare training opportunities.
She said, “STS is the longest established training organisation in the Strabane area and over the years we have helped thousands of people into training, further education and employment.
“We provide training courses and apprenticeships across a wide range of areas including Fitness and Exercise, ICT, retail and construction. STS also operates a state of the art Hair and Beauty Academy, along with other small enterprise businesses to provide direct employment and training.
“UCIT has been a long-term partner for STS and the latest loan has made the expansion into children’s day care possible. This opens up a new area of training opportunities for STS and is part of a wider strategy to enhance our services to the community.”
Phelim Sharvin, associate director, UCIT said that it was encouraging to see the positive impact on the community.
“Strabane Training Services is one of Northern Ireland’s most dynamic social enterprises and has a remarkable track record of providing training and jobs in an area traditionally blighted by high levels of unemployment.
“UCIT has been working with Strabane Training Services for over a decade and it’s been very encouraging to witness its positive impact upon the local community.
“UCIT provides affordable, flexible, loan support ranging from £1,000 to £500,000 to community-based organisations, charities and social enterprises throughout Northern Ireland. Our clients include sports clubs, faith-based organisations, green energy projects, housing schemes and community regeneration initiatives.
“In addition we manage the NI Small Business Loan Fund on behalf of Invest Northern Ireland. This Fund provides access to finance for small businesses and sole traders which are keen to develop their business, but find it difficult to access funding through traditional banking sources.
“We’d encourage organisations and businesses in the Strabane area to speak to us about what support is available.”
Since its foundation, UCIT has committed in excess of £60 million to over 600 organisations across Northern Ireland. As a registered charity, all profits generated by UCIT are retained and recycled for the benefit of its clients.
• Those interested in finding out more can visit www.ucitltd.com or contact 028 9031 5003.