Developed by the European Confederation for the Footwear Industry (CEC) and other European partners, the EU funded project “Shoes Made in EU” seeks to address the shortage of skilled workers in the sector and the lack of robust educational and training programmes for footwear manufacturers in some geographical areas where the industry is present. The online course aims to provide an “updated profile and training programme for current and aspiring shoemakers to obtain the necessary skills to make them successfully employable and enjoy a career in a sector which needs to retain and upgrade innovative skills and know-how”, says a statement. Displayed in a dynamic online platform, the course includes presentations, videos, exercises and self-evaluation tests.

On 25 September 2017, the European Confederation of the Footwear Industry held a Multiplier Event in Brussels to present the online platform and the 14 units and to demonstrate the relevance of the Footwear Manufacturing Technician in today’s footwear industry.

The training model is said to be an adaptation and upgrade of existing training models in Portugal and Germany, and it also respects the principles of EQF (European Qualifications Framework) and ECVET (European Credit system for Vocational Education and Training), to help facilitate the integration in the different education and training systems at a European level, hence, supporting the mobility of footwear workers in the EU and increasing their employability. Besides the English language, the material will be also available in Italian, Portuguese, German, French, and Polish.