Local businesses in Harrow are set to receive a substantial £626,615 funding boost, thanks to the GLA’s UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) Supply Ready Programme.
The initiative aims to support businesses in securing public sector contracts and enhance the skills of residents, providing them with better access to job opportunities.
Of this funding, £151,500 has been allocated specifically to help local businesses compete for public sector contracts. Additionally, the London Borough of Harrow (Harrow Council) has secured a noteworthy £474,115 to implement projects focused on improving residents’ skills and job brokerage, thus further supporting the local business community.
This development aligns perfectly with the launch of Harrow’s Economic Development Strategy, a comprehensive three-year plan designed to prioritize growth and sustainability for local businesses. The strategy emphasises key objectives, including enhancing residents’ employability through skill development, fostering job creation, and revitalizing local high streets.
Councillor Norman Stevenson, Portfolio Holder for Business, Employment, and Property, expressed his delight for the initiative, stating, “I am passionate about ensuring our business community is thriving, and that residents are given the best opportunities in Harrow to upskill and find local jobs.”
The UKSPF, with its investment priorities, centred around Communities and Places, Supporting Local Businesses, and People and Skills, will enable Harrow to launch various projects catering to these themes. This includes initiatives supporting local businesses, town centres, parks, open spaces, and culture, and providing assistance to residents amid the current cost-of-living crisis.
Under the People and Skills theme, particular attention will be given to supporting young people in finding employment, creating career hubs, and offering adult programs throughout the borough to address the diverse needs of the community.
The joint effort between Harrow, Ealing, and Hillingdon Councils, which secured £500,000 in total, exemplifies the commitment of these west London boroughs to obtain funding through a competitive bid to the GLA. The GLA manages London’s allocation of the Department of Levelling Up Housing and Community United Kingdom Shared Prosperity Fund.