Together with representatives from partner associations APIC (Employers, Portugal), BDSZ (Trade Union, Hungary), FEMCA/CISL (Trade Union, Italy), VDL (Employers, Germany), UKLF (Employers, UK), as well as UNIC (Employers, Italy), COTANCE and industriAll-Europe reviewed the activities carried out during the first phase of the initiative and discussed further action. Other partner associations such as FFTM (Employers, France), SG (Employers, Sweden), APPBR (Employers, Romania), BUof LFFHI (Employers, Bulgaria) sent in their written contributions.

The first project activities were reviewed and, in particular, the ‘Leather is my Job’ ceremony organised in Germany. VDL, the German Leather Federation, reported on the new German “leather technicianprofessional qualification training, the diploma award ceremony and other special Awards that were co-financed by the project.

The project partners welcomed UNIC’s interest to join the initiative and will add all the promotional, educational and communication activities organised by the Italian tanning industry to future activities. New linguistic versions of an updated common ‘Leather is my Job Brochure’ were also announced such as the translation of the leaflet in Swedish and Italian, and the addition of Hungary as a partner and a new Hungarian version of the document.

Future activities are to include further testimonials, a number of open doors in tanneries across Portugal, UK, Hungary, Germany and France, educational activities at schools in France, UK and other countries, participation at job fairs and closer involvement of job centres in a number of partner countries.

During the meeting, the UK Leather Federation (UKLF) announced a fruitful collaboration with ICLT (University of Northampton) for the production of a video that fits in the project activities.

The importance of social media was emphasised, in particular, the active Facebook page of the project, where workers are regularly portrayed and all the project activities are reported.

The final conference of the project will take place in Igualada, Spain, in June 2017. Participants will be able to witness interesting developments in the Catalan leather cluster, where research, education and training structures have been recently reorganised to produce better results.