EDP Renováveis and Vestas join forces to boost rural employment

The two companies will use the ‘Keep it Local’ program to provide training to 24 young people living in towns where the companies are present. The selected candidates will be granted a scholarship to take the wind farm maintenance engineer course offered by AEE (Spanish Wind Power Association).

EDP Renováveis (Euronext: EDPR), a world leader in the renewable energy sector and one of the main wind power producers in the world with a presence in 15 countries, and Vestas, a leading company in the manufacture, sale, installation and maintenance of wind turbines, have launched the ‘Keep it Local’ program to grant training scholarships for young people living in small towns.

‘Keep it Local’ aims to contribute to youth training and help create employment as a way to combat rural depopulation. The program will offer the young participants the opportunity to enter the labor market close to where they live, becoming drivers of the rural economy.

The prize winners will enjoy free enrollment for the online Wind Farm Maintenance Engineer course given by AEE, and will also be included in both companies’ recruitment processes. The winners will also complement their training with the basic occupational health and safety certificate and the GWO certificate for working at heights and first aid.

Application is open to young persons aged between 18 and 30 who live in geographical areas where both companies have a presence through wind farms, provided they have completed their compulsory secondary education. This nationwide initiative will see EDPR and Vestas allocate around 45,000 euros in scholarships for the 24 eligible places

Divided into 10 modules, the course consists of 174 hours of theory-based and practical training. Candidates must submit their application by April 26, 2021 by completing the form found at keepitlocal-program.com or by sending an e-mail to keepitlocal@edpr.com. Once received, a jury made up of EDPR and Vestas representatives will choose the winners of the scholarship based on the competition criteria.

Duarte Bello, COO of EDPR Europa & Brasil, commented: ” Our company takes a holistic view of business, meaning our contribution to sustainable development is not limited to simply generating clean energy, but rather we strive to go one step further. In this case, the ‘Keep it Local’ program aims to mitigate the Western world’s deep-rooted problem of rural depopulation caused by the industrialization of urban areas. Indeed, renewable energies are a factor in terms of industrialization and creating employment at local level “. 

Javier Rodríguez, President of Vestas Mediterránea, has pointed out: “Maintaining and operating wind farms is a huge opportunity to create employment in rural areas, in turn helping create strong local and regional supply chains.  In Spain, more than 500 Vestas O&M engineers service around 6 GW of wind turbines. Our work also makes an important contribution to energy transition in our country, probably the greatest tool currently available in the fight against climate change ”.