Midstream in full flow with skills support

A West Lancashire enterprise that offers work activity and training for people with learning difficulties and disabilities has become the latest organisation to benefit from a £5.6m workforce training programme.

Midstream, based in Skelmersdale, has put more than 20 of its team through specialist qualifications, including Level 1 British Sign Language, Level 2 Diploma in Health and Social Care, and Assessor Practitioner training for learning support assistants.

The free training was secured through the Lancashire Skills Support programme and has been delivered through specialist training provider The Via Partnership. Lancashire Skills Support has already helped more than 3,300 Lancashire workers to secure free training and skills qualifications.

Midstream has over 150 clients and offers work activity and training in horticulture, contract gardening, landscaping and environmental conservation, craft, hospitality and catering. It also operates a retail garden centre, gift shop and tea rooms at its Penrose Place premises.

Mark Saxon, operations manager at Midstream, said: “Midstream strives to remove barriers faced by people with additional needs, and the opportunity of accessing funded support from Lancashire Skills Support for our staff to learn British Sign Language is invaluable. This opportunity has enhanced our inclusive support to clients who have additional communication needs.” Rebecca Lynch, of The Via Partnership, said: “The qualifications delivered have developed specific skills of the learners giving them the knowledge and understanding to provide additional support to their clients.”