Just who is ‘Lou Brazier’?

One of the difficult social issues of this century is how to engage young people in work from areas of poverty.

As the world economy since 2007 has taken a voyage of discovery that has baffled even the most experienced, this social problem has been accentuated. In some areas of the world it’s a disease that is spreading as countries come under increasing economic pressure. If you don’t believe it take a closer look at Greece.

Recently the Prime Minister, David Cameron has focused attention on how to beat poverty in his welfare speech. On his twitter page he said “We’ve got to recognise that in the end, the only thing that really beats poverty, long term, is work.” Party politics aside it does make sense. But this isn’t a new problem but it is such an issue today that it hits the  ’front burner’. But haven’t we had programmes in place before to deal with this? It’s blatantly obvious the increasing welfare purse is dragging done whatever government plans are in place and so addressing this issue and making a success will have a huge impact on the economy as a fitter and willing workforce will add to growth and wealth.

So we’re all waiting to hear what this new magic bullet is, the solution to this issue that’s not been there before – where’s the next piece – the how? Sadly you can hear a pin drop on that one! Eric Pickles MP, has a solution, work harder…mmm we’ll have to think on that.

Now we do have some great solutions on our doorstep, if only someone would take the time to look and build on them. But that’s the problem, they are on our doorstep and they are either not the right people or the chosen routes for funding plus a number of other reasons why it’s not suitable.

Many managers and leaders in business, public or private sector will also know that an independent third party will always influence the boss more than you can. It’s a fact, because that’s what happens in practice. Why? Because no CEO gets the sack by hiring Accenture, KPMG, PWC or other change manager. How to change that practise is reserved for another day!

So where’s a solution to this ‘unemployment ‘ problem that not’s local and works –  how about looking at down under to a little suburb called Geelong, Australia. That should be far enough.

Here’s a link http://www.northernfuturesgeelong.net/index.html to a project that is really working. But as we’re all busy here are a few highlights

Northern Futures – Our Vision & Mission

Just who is ‘Lou Brazier’?Vision: To create a sustainable 3214 community by strengthening the local economy and linking the needs of the community and employers.

Mission: To create employment and training opportunities for the 60% of people in our community most at risk of becoming or remaining workless.

Those are the highlights – and they are achieving exactly what they set out to do! A collaborative partnership of the right people.

Nothing is that easy and they don’t claim it is. But it takes a partnership of a ‘Can Do’ people in all the sectors – Public, Private and 3rd sector – who are engaged in a common purpose and committed to it. Of course they have politics, but they don’t let it stand in their way.

Here’s the STEERING COMMITTEE  http://www.northernfuturesgeelong.net/about.html – now that’s what I call a committee! To do that in the UK you’d need the DWP, Local Councils, Central Government (BIS), JCPlus and others from the public sector alone.

It just goes to show what you can achieve with the right vision, focus and the will to succeed.

Oh yes, and back to the subject – Who is Lou Brazier? She’s the ‘Can Do’ person who started it, but you’ll never know because to her it’s all about the Vision and the Mission.

I was fortunate to make Lou’s acquaintance recently as I renewed a ‘very’ old friendship with Bryan Raine. To my amazement, I learnt that Lou has gone past the ‘normal’ age for retirement, but I can’t see her retiring while there’s work to be done. She’s even made Bryan think again. If you get a chance to meet or work with either, don’t miss the opportunity.

‘Can do’ or Mind Fit people make great leaders and Lou Brazier is certainly among them.

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