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Departmental Contracts

Volume 486: debated on Monday 12 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) how many contracts his Department and its executive agencies have made with the training provider Inspire2Independence; and if he will make a statement; (245230)

(2) what steps Jobcentre Plus has taken to encourage the involvement of football clubs in Inspire2Independence's welfare to work programme;

(3) what assessment he has made of the performance of Inspire2Independence's football-related contracts with his Department and its agencies in (a) involving people outside the working population and (b) helping such people into work.

Inspire2Independence currently hold three DWP contracts for the delivery of welfare to work provision. The organisation plays a valuable role both in terms of delivering a range of welfare to work services and in helping develop activity to improve performance of welfare to work commercial services generally.

Jobcentre Plus has played no role in encouraging the involvement of football clubs in provision delivered by Inspire2Independence, though they are responsible for managing the referral of customers to provision. The “Coaching Academy” model developed by Inspire2Independence does make use of a number of football club facilities to deliver its services.

Inspire2Independence were given a challenging implementation plan and their performance against this is improving month by month. Their performance in November was in the top 25 per cent. of DWP welfare to work providers and overall they are achieving mid range performance.