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Home Policy and campaigns Campaign with us Campaign news 2014 Gingerbread launches major report on single parent training
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Gingerbread report calls on the government to invest in single parent training

Gingerbread's Policy Officer, Philippa Newis speaks about our new report, Making the Grade, which examines how government investment in further education can benefit single parents and the state.

Finding a job can sometimes feel like an assault course with lots of different hurdles to clear and hoops to jump through. Having the right qualifications and training under your belt can make the challenge a little easier – especially when you’re trying to land a job that’s right for you and pays a salary that allows you to support your family.

We know single parents are extremely resourceful and hard-working, but they might not have the traditional or formal qualifications needed to help them compete in a crowded jobs market. This puts them on the back foot. It means that when they do find work, over two-thirds of single parents enter the three lowest paid industries.

“If you are unemployed and looking to gain qualifications to improve your chances of employment, think again!  If you are, like me, surviving on jobseeker’s allowance and child tax credits with no savings and no child maintenance – forking out for course fees is going to seem unattainable.”  - Julie

That’s why our report, Making the Grade, is calling for increased government investment in training for single parents to help them compete in the crowded jobs market.


Our report shows that single parents with a level 3 qualification (equivalent to A-Level):

  • Have longer periods of sustained employment
  • Spend less time on out-of-work benefits
  • Secure better wages
  • Are more likely to work longer hours.

We want the government to fully fund single parents to gain their first level 3 qualification.

Not only could this make a huge difference to single parents in their efforts to find, keep, and progress in a job that’s right for them – it would also bring substantial returns to the government. The increased tax returns that would come from boosting single parent qualification levels could help the government to make gains of up to £670 million. If the government commits to investing in single parent’s futures, everyone benefits.

Take a look at the report's top findings, or download the full report by clicking here.

“For me studying has been a release. It has given me a sense of achievement – even if is finishing a book on time or getting an average mark, the thought of possible success in the future gives me such hope." - Gingerbread Make it work blogger

Want to help us call for more investment in single parent training? Join our campaign to Make it work for single parents.

Are you thinking about getting additional qualifications? Our factsheet on money for further education can help. You can also search for education grants with the Turn2Us Grants Search.

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