Jobridge Internship Scheme – FAQ’s interns

PARTICIPANT FAQ’s  http://www.jobbridge.ie/toolkit/faqintern.pdf 
JobBridge, the National Internship Scheme
1. What is the JobBridge the National Internship Scheme?
JobBridge, the National Internship Scheme (NIS) is a Government initiative designed
to offer jobseekers that have a live claim and have been in receipt of Jobseekers
Allowance/Jobseekers Benefit/One Parent Family Payment/Disability Allowance
or signing  for Social Insurance Contributioncredits for at least 3 months (78 days), the
opportunity to enhance their current skills and develop new ones. The duration of
individual internship positions will be a 6month or a 9 month placement.
2. What is a Host Organisation and an Intern?
Host Organisation -Organisations providing internship opportunities and
participating in the scheme are referred to as ‘Host Organisations’ (HO).
Intern – A person who is engaged by another person to carry out work or perform any
duty or service pursuant to a placement under the JobBridge, National Internship
Scheme shall, for the purposes of any enactment or rule of law (other than the Tax
Acts and the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005), be deemed not to be an
employee of the other person or to carry out such work or perform such duties
pursuant to a contract of service.
3. Am I eligible?
In order to be eligible to participate in JobBridge the National Internship Scheme
an individual must be:
A) Currently in receipt of a live claim (Jobseekers Allowance/Jobseekers
Benefit/One Parent Family Payment/Disability Allowance /Signing for Credits)
B) And have been in receipt of Job seekers Allowance/Job seekers Benefit/ One
Parent Family Payment/Disability Allowance or signing for Social Insurance
Contribution Credits for a total of 3 months (78 days) or more in the last 6
months.Periods spent on Back to Education Allowance, VTOS, FÁS/Fáilte Ireland Training
courses, Youthreach, FIT, Community Employment Schemes, TUS, the Rural Social
Scheme, Back to Work Scheme, Back to Work Enterprise Allowance,Momentum
Courses,FÁS Job Initiative or Job Assist will count towards meeting the eligibility of
JobBridge, provided:
C)  The individual has completed these programmes
D) Has  a live claim
E) in receipt of Jobseekers Benefit/ One Parent Family
Payment/Disability Allowance or signing for Social Insurance Contribution
Credits immediately before commencing on JobBridge.
Commencement on the internship is dependant on DSP confirming the
individual’s eligibility

4. I am currently in receipt of One Parent Family Payment am I eligible for

JobBridge?
Individuals in receipt  of One  Parent Family Payment are eligible to participate in
JobBridge as long as they are in receipt of their OPF payment.
5. How do I know if I can retain my social welfare allowance?
If you have a qualifying claim (see below) and have been for  3 months (78 days) or
more in the last 6 months and currently in receipt of any of the following payments:
  • Job Seeker’s Allowance
  • Job Seeker’s Benefit
  • One Parent Family Payment
  • Disability Allowance
  • Signing for
  • Social Insurance Contribution
  • Credits
You will retain your current social welfare allowance plus an additional €50 per week
top up which will be paid by the Department Social Protection (DSP). This top up
will be paid for the duration of the internship.
6. Can casual claimants on the Live Register participate on JobBridge?
Yes. Casual claimants can participate in JobBridge, the National Internship Scheme
provided that their employer is not the provider of the internship
7.Can I apply for an internship with an organisation that I have completed a WPP
with?
No, an individual cannot apply for an internship with an organisation that they have
previously completed a WPP with.
8.Can I apply for an internship with an organisation that I have an existing
or prior employment relationship e.g. working part-time?
No, an individual cannot apply for an internship with an organisation that they have
an existing or prior employment relationship with.
9. Will I get paid?
You will receive an internship allowance that is equal to your current social welfare
allowance (at time of commencement on the scheme) plus an additional €50 per week
top-up which will be paid by the Department Social Protection (DSP).
All changes in circumstances must be notified to your local social welfare office as this may affect your social welfare payment.

This top-up will be paid for the duration of the internship but in arrears and it is expected that participants will receive this top up allowance approximately 2 weeks after commencing on the programme.  All payments of the Internship Allowance will be made by the Department of Social Protection via Electronic Fund Transfer into the intern’s bank account.
10. Will I get any top up contributions from the company?
There is no employer top up contribution. However, there is nothing to prevent a HO
reimbursing an intern for expenses incurred as part of the internship.
11. Where do I go to find an internship?
The internships will be advertised at http://www.jobbridge.ie, Jobs Ireland website, FÁS
WATIS machines and in Employment Services offices. Host Organisations can advert
ise their placements once they meet eligibility criteria and have been approved.
Alternatively, if you wish to acquire an internship within a specific organisation you
can approach them yourself informing them of the National Internship Scheme (NIS)
and direct them to the website to apply as a HO.
12.What type of placements will be on offer?
Placements may be offered across a wide range of sectors and occupation areas.
13. I’m under 25, am I entitled to the SW higher rate? Individuals will be entitled to their
base rate of social welfare plus the weekly top up of €50.
14.How long can I participate on an internship for?
A participant can avail of a placement on an internship work experience opportunity
delivered under the National Internship Scheme (NIS) for a 6 month (26 weeks)period
or a 9 month (39 weeks) period. It will be the Host Organisations who will advertise for either a 6 month or a 9 month placement.
15.How many hours do I have to work?
A standard Internship working week will range from 30 – 40 hours per week. Therefore an intern will be required to participate on the scheme for a minimum of 30  hours and a maximum of 40 hours per week.
16. What if I start an internship and I realise this placement is not for me, can I do
another?
One week’s  notice must be given by either party. The HO must logon to their JobBridge account and enter the early completion (finish date) immediately after early completion date.  Individuals may avail of a maximum of 2 JobBridge internships however, the total
cumulative time spent on the scheme cannot exceed 9 months (39 weeks).
17.How do I apply for internship placement?
Go towww.jobbridge.ie and click on current internship opportunities to see what  internships are on offer. And, if interested apply directly to the Host Organisation by
the method they specify in the advertisement.
18. How will I be selected?
Each Host Organisation will decide how they select the person for the placement. For
example they may ask you to forward a CV and call you for an interview. When you
make contact with the HO about the placement they will tell you more about their
selection process. If selected and you are currently on Jobseekers Allowance/Jobseekers Benefit/One Parent Family Payment/Signing for Social Insurance Contribution Credits, the HO will give you an eligibility form to bring to your local Social Welfare office to be  completed and stamped. Once eligibility is confirmed, the Social Welfare office returns
(for eligible clients only) the completed form to JobBridge for processing. If you are selected and you are currently on Disability Allowance you will need to complete the following steps.
A) You must download the DIR PMT 1 form please use the link below:
http://www.welfare.ie/EN/Forms/Documents/eft.pdf. Please ensure you complete all parts of the DIR PMT1 form as incomplete forms will not be processed.
B)   The HO will give you an eligibility (UP51C) form
C) You must post the completed DIR PMT 1 form and the eligibility
(UP51C) form to the following address:  Social Welfare Services,Department of Social and Family Affairs, Ballinalee Road, Longford, Co. Longford.  Once eligibility is confirmed, the Social Welfare Services returns (for eligible clients only) the completed form
to JobBridge for processing.  Clients who are ineligible will have the form(s) returned to them by the Social  Welfare office/ Social Welfare  Services and the client must notify the Host Organisation that they are ineligible to participate on JobBridge. Commencement on the internship is dependant on DSP confirming the individual’s eligibility.

19.  Should I inform DSP that I have started an Internship?
Yes, individuals must notify DSP when there is any change in their status. Commencing an internship is a change in status.
20. What will I be doing on my placement?
When a Host Organisation selects a potential intern, they complete a Standard
Agreement to include details of the skills, experience you will have the opportunity to
learn and/or apply during the internship. The HO will give you a copy of this
agreement that will be signed by both you and the HO.
21.  Who will look after me during my placement?
The Host Organisation will nominate an individual to support and/or mentor you
during your placement. This person will have responsibility to ensure that you
receive a proper induction, ensure that your work experience as described in the
standard agreement is progressing and that monthly compliance checks are being
completed (to ensure your internship allowance continues to be paid by DSP). If an
organisation has a formal mentoring programme, they should include you in this
programme.
22. Will my placement be checked?
Yes, there will be a monthly compliance check that the Host Organisation will return
each month. The purpose is to confirm your attendance and that the work experience
described in the Standard Agreement is progressing. This return must
be made each
month in order to ensure the payment of your internship allowance.
23. Can I participate on education and training courses while on the internship?
Interns on JobBridge, may engage in education and training provided by the Host
Organisation or part time education and training courses, irrespective of length and which
are paid for by the State provided that it does not have an adverse impact on
the internship.  Interns on JobBridge, are  not eligible to access:
A)  full time education or  full time training courses paid for by the State,
b)  Other Department of Social Protection initiatives such as the Back to Education
Allowance and the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance.

24. Can I access Technical Employment Support Grant (TESG)?

JobBridge participants are eligible to be considered for TESG. Please discuss this
option with an Employment Services Officer or LES Mediator at your local
Employment Services/LES office.
25.  Am I eligible for a FÁS Course Fee Waiver?
JobBridge participants are eligible to be considered for the fee waiver. Please discuss this option with an Employment Services Officer or LES Mediator at your local Employment Services/LES office 26.
Will I receive a Reference at the end of the Internship?
Yes, when the placement is finished the HO must supply you with a reference that
will detail the professional development/learning outcomes and experience you have
acquired over the course of the placement.
27. Do I get time off during an Internship?
Although you are not an employee of the company you should still be given adequate
time off for attending job interviews during the placement to visit your local SW
office and Employment Services office in order to facilitate your job seeking
activities.
28. Am I entitled to any leave during my time on the placement?
Yes, you are entitled to the following leave:
A)  Annual Leave – Interns will be entitled to all Public Holidays and
1.75 days annual  leave for each month that they participate on the National Internship
Scheme.
B)  Maternity Leave– Interns are entitled to suspend a JobBridge placement early due
to maternity leave. Host Organisations will enter a finish date when you commence your maternity leave. Eligibility needs to be confirmed before recommencing on your Internship. The top up payment will cease whilst on maternity leave.
C)  Sick Leave–  The maximum cumulative sick leave permissible over the course of
an internship is 2 weeks (10 working days). Where an intern has exceeded this
limit, the Host Organisation shall terminate the internship immediately.
29. What if the Internship is not working out as I expected?
Workplace issues should be resolved with the host organisation.
If the internship is not working out as expected you should discuss this with the
person that is supervising/mentoring your internship.  If this does not resolve the issue
you can contact us by sending an email to jobbridge@welfare.ie
providing the following: Your name, contact details, the host organisation name, internship title and brief outline of the issue. An internship can finish early with one weeks notice on either side. In this event, the  Host Organisation must log on and notify JobBridge immediately of the new  completion date. The intern must notify DSP immediately.
30.  What if I get a job?
If you get paid work that is great! If you get a job during the placement you are under
no obligation to stay, again you should give the HO, DSP and JobBridge one weeks’
notice that you are leaving.
31. Can Adult Dependents avail of an Internship?
Qualified Adults cannot participate in JobBridge nor can they use spousal swaps to
become eligible. The only way for them to qualify is to get a Jobseekers claim in
their own name; however the standard 78 days must expire before they will become
eligible for the Scheme.
32. When I finish an internship, can I apply for the Back to Work Enterprise
Allowance?
Yes, provided you meet the eligibility criteria. See http://www.welfare.ie
33.  Is there any reduced rate childcare if I take up this scheme?
No, but a host organisation may have childcare facilities available.
34. If I’m signing for credits and /or my stamps run out during the internship, what
happens?
An individual’s entitlements or stamps are unable to run out during an internship.
They are effectively frozen for the period spent on the National Internship Scheme
and will resume immediately upon completion subject to their circumstances not
changing.
35. Can I participate on Springboard or JobBridge scheme or Back
to Education allowance and simultaneously participate on Community Employment (CE)?
No
36. Can time spent on JobBridge, Springboard or Back to Education allowance
count towards the qualifying period for eligibility to CE?
No
37. If I am on JobBridge, Springboard or receiving the Back to Education allowance
can I avail of spousal swap option for CE (to allow my spouse on CE)?

No. Persons engaged on Springboard, JobBridge or receiving Back to Education allowance may not avail of spousal swap option for CE (to allow their spouse on CE) for the duration of their own programme.

38. Can I convert from WPP to NIS?
No.   Closing date for receipt of applications for transfer from WPP to NIS was
Wednesday 31st August 2011. After this date no more transfers are permitted.
39.  I am currently in receipt of Widows Pension am I eligible for JobBridge?
Individuals in receipt of Widows Pension are ineligible to participate in JobBridge
even if they are also receiving half rate Jobseekers Benefit.
40.  I am currently in receipt of Blind Pension am I eligible for JobBridge?
Individuals in receipt of Blind Pension are ineligible to participate in JobBridge even
if they are also receiving half rate Jobseekers Benefit.
41. I am currently in receipt of Disability Allowance am I eligible for JobBridge?
Individuals in receipt of Disability Allowance are eligible to participate in JobBridge. If you are selected by a host organisation  you will need to complete the following steps.
You must download the DIR PMT 1 form  please use the link below:
Please ensure you complete all parts of the DIR PMT1 form as incomplete forms will
not be processed. The HO will give you an eligibility (UP51C) form  You must post the completed DIR PMT 1 form and the eligibility (UP51C) form to the following address:
Social Welfare Services
Department of
Social and Family Affairs
Ballinalee Road
Longford
Co. Longford.
Once eligibility is confirmed, the Social Welfare Services returns (for eligible clients only)   the completed form to JobBridge for processing.  Clients who are ineligible will have the form  (s) returned to them by Social Welfare  Services  and the client must notify the Host Organisation that they are ineligible to participate on JobBridge.

42.   Can an individual progress onto a JobBridge internship from  Community Employment (CE)?
Yes, subject to completing their CE scheme and all other eligibility criteria met. An
individual cannot apply for an internship with an organisation that they have
previously completed a CE scheme with. However, moving from JobBridge to CE is
not viewed as an appropriate progression route by the Department.
43.  Does an individual receive credits whilst partaking on JobBridge?
Yes. An individual who was receiving credits on their JA/JB claim prior to JobBridge
will continue to receive their credits for the duration of their internship.
44.  Who is responsible for providing the intern with appropriate clothing &
equipment during the course of their internship?
It is the responsibility for the Host Organisation to provide an intern with appropriate
clothing and equipment as required during the course of their internship.
45.  Is there an age limit to partaking on the Scheme?
An eligible individual can partake on a JobBridge Internship from 18 yrs up to the age
of 65 yrs and their internship must finish the Friday before the individuals 66th
birthday.
46. Can I undertake my JobBridge internship from home?
No, an individual cannot undertake their JobBridge internship

from home

 

 

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