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AAI EmployAbility present Back to Work: Women Returners Project

From January 2021 AAI EmployAbility will run a project to support minority ethnic women to return to the workforce after a career break whilst empowering businesses to improve their recruitment procedures to attract and retain more diversity. 

Our previous work in this area has focussed on working with minority ethnic women who face various unique barriers to employment despite their talent and qualifications.  

The initiative will be open to minority ethnic women in Scotland to access tailored support in employment, with resources delivered through online events and coaching.

There will also be some four-week work placements (in February) should you wish to apply. These will be with Scottish businesses and will increase your work experience and enhance your CV.

We will be running online workshops via Zoom and would ask you to reserve  the following dates:

  • 13 & 14 January, 10:00 -12:00
  • 3 & 4 February, 10:00 – 1200
  • 3 & 4 March, 10:00 – 12:00

The programme is starting very soon, so if this is of interest to you, or someone you know, please reply ASAP.

If you have a CV, or a list of your skills, qualifications and experience please send it with your reply. If you don’t have a CV,  let us know by email:

AAI previously ran a similar project supporting women returners which resulted in these success stories.


Evidence suggests that many women struggle to return to work after a career break due to factors such as a lack of access to flexible working to support care commitments, lack of confidence due to lack of up-to-date work experience and lack relevant skills.

As a result, they can find their job choices limited to lower-paid, part-time work and can experience pay inequality, underemployment, job insecurity, and a lack of opportunities for development and career progression.

The aim of this project is to contribute to reducing the gender pay gap in Scotland, improve women’s economic position in the labour market and deliver fair and inclusive economic growth. 

The programme aims to support women returners across Scotland who have had a career break due to childcare, other care or health commitments and have a particular focus on supporting minority ethnic women who experience multiple barriers to employment, and focus on the manufacturing sector where women are significantly underrepresented in the workforce and at senior levels. 

It will address the ‘motherhood penalty’, a key driver of the gender pay gap and will respond to EHRC research findings on pregnancy and maternity discrimination which revealed that 77% of women reported a negative or discriminatory pregnancy/maternity experience. The gap increases as a women ages, from a woman’s child-bearing and child-rearing years, right up to women aged over 50 who often experience disadvantage and discrimination when transitioning through menopause. 

The programme aims to support women to return to work at levels commensurate with their abilities, skills and experience. Women would generally have had work experience and a good level of qualifications before taking a break. The programme should support them to gain up to date work experience to fill that gap in their CV, which would allow them to apply for jobs at a level commensurate with their qualifications and past experience.


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