A big congratulations to our Belfast & Lisburn Women’s Aid group, who were one of 4 finalists in the Department of Employment & Learning’s VQ (Vocational Qualifications) Employer of the Year Award 2014. The other 3 finalists were the Henderson Group, McGees and Seagate Technology, who was the eventual winner.  A celebration evening was held on Wednesday 4 June in the Great Hall at Stormont hosted by DEL Minister Dr Stephen Farry & Tina Campbell from the BBC.

The judges for this award were drawn from the Department of Employment and Learning, Ofqual and IT Assist. The criteria for selection included:

  • Achievement and excellence in championing vocational qualifications
  • Evidence that vocational qualifications have boosted the performance of the organisation
  • Evidence that the support for vocational qualifications goes beyond that of other NI organisations

Belfast & Lisburn Women’s Aid has always been serious about its commitment to training and development of all its staff and volunteers, and development is one of 5 operational objectives for 2013 – 2015. All staff complete core training and then progress to more specific vocational and professional training appropriate to their role. The benefits of a highly trained workforce are immense. Given the nature of our work it is also vital.

Over the last few years Government has asked for more inter agency working through their Tackling Domestic Violence at Home strategy. Belfast and Lisburn Women’s Aid training strategy means that these challenges can be met. Belfast & Lisburn Women’s Aid works in partnership with a number of agencies, including the PSNI; the Court Service; 2 Health & Social Care Trusts; Trade Unions and the Belfast & South Eastern Health Domestic Violence Partnerships as well as other voluntary and community groups.

Belfast & Lisburn Women’s Aid’s wide range of vocational qualifications, and other recognized accredited training, enables the organization to action plan, share good practice and it aids sustainability.

The Management Committee, the Management Coordinator, 8 Team Leaders and all the staff and volunteers are fully committed to promoting quality assurance, development of skills; occupational competence; sustained productivity and adherence to quality standards in order to respond effectively to change and to continue to work towards eliminating domestic violence from our society.

Our success is down to the hard work and dedication of all concerned!