Group's takeover of centre opens doors for education
OPPORTUNITIES for local people to gain qualifications have opened up following the takeover of a Chaddesden community centre.
Derwent Stepping Stones is taking over Chesapeake Community Centre in Chaddesden after being given the go-ahead by Derby City Council to extend its programmes.
Janet Holland, the chief executive, said they had looking for another premises before they knew Chesapeake Community Centre was up for tender.
Ms Holland said: "We found out that there was a gap in provision in Chaddesden and the Chesapeake centre was in a great location.
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"We have the centre in St Mark's Road and the St James Centre. It will be an addition to what we can offer to the whole community."
Derwent Stepping Stones will be working with the community to find out what they want from the centre and what services they would like to see on offer there.
As well as training in child care, there will also be opportunities for adults to study for NVQs and entry-level courses in English and maths.
Ms Holland said that it was anticipated that they would take over the running of the centre between September and Christmas this year, after all the paperwork and negotiations had been dealt with.
There will also be apprenticeships available.
She added: "It is an ethos of Derwent Stepping Stones to employ local people and to support local employment.
"The vacancies that arise will be open to those in the local community so I would like to say, don't wait for the adverts to appear for the jobs – just get in touch with us and we will help where we can."
Labour councillor for Chaddesden Sara Bolton said the takeover of Chesapeake Community Centre by Derwent Stepping Stones would be "great for the area".
She said: "There is a gap in the centre of Chaddesden and it is in desperate need of an organisation like Derwent Stepping Stones.
"There are two children's centres in Chaddesden but they are at either end of the ward, leaving the people who live in the middle with a lack of resources.
"Derwent Stepping Stones will help people across the area with child care and to help them with training and gaining more qualifications."