Published: May 11, 2022 | Updated: May 12, 2022

Biz Bites with 360 Skills for Life, Goadsby & Strategic Solutions Financial Services

A screen grab from the Virtual Reality (VR) safeguarding module from 360 Skills for Life.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

Not for profit startup launches safeguarding package for schools

A Dorset not for profit digital organisation has launched a unique virtual reality (VR) world which brings safeguarding dilemmas to life through realistic scenarios.

Backed by the NHS, Talbot Village Trust, Valentine Trust and others, 360 Skills For Life helps teachers bridge the gap between academic learning and the outside world.

Using VR, it exists to help young people learn interactively about how to live and thrive in the world outside school.

With direct links to PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic education) learning outcomes, the programme is designed to enhance schools’ existing curriculum offer.

The first module, aimed at ten to 14 year olds, directly addresses the need to respond to safeguarding concerns that exist for these year groups.

Using VR Skill City, and teacher-led classroom learning, the programme enables young people to explore age-appropriate dilemmas.

Teacher-led sessions facilitate discussions about how to avoid and, if necessary, how to react to some tricky situations.

Whether in the home or outside school, 360 is designed to engage and facilitate critical life skills learning.

Live since March, the Community Interest Company has already reached more than 60 per cent of its initial target to sign up 270 schools to the programme.

Limited further funded places are still available.

Rob Hattersley, pictured left, Founder and Managing Director, said: “We have had a tremendous reception to the 360 concept, from both schools and partner agencies.

“Developing a VR environment, related lesson plans and resources, and launching to schools has been a complex task, but we are grateful for the support we have had from key backers including NHS England and Dorset CCG.

“They have enabled us to build the module and offer funded places to schools in Dorset and the south west region.

“Ensuring the relevance of our safeguarding module was critical.

“Input from the NHS, police, teachers and The Safeguarding Company (providers of the safeguarding software MyConcern used in many schools) have enabled us to create a stimulating, engaging and effective teaching resource for schools.

“We’re delighted with the response to this first module and are accelerating our plans to offer this to primary and secondary schools across the UK.”

360 Skills For Life is a digital replacement for Dorset’s SafeWise charity, which closed in 2020 due to Covid-related income loss.

Rob is the former CEO of the charity.


Continued success for Goadsby at Westcroft Business Park

Goadsby, acting on behalf of a private client, has let Units 5, 6, 7 and 10 at Westcroft Business Park in Ringwood Road, Three Legged Cross.

Unit 5 is let to Two Fields Zakros, Unit 6 to an individual, Unit 7 to Premier Medics Ltd and Unit 10 to TEK Optima Research Ltd.

All were delighted to secure premises in the second phase of the business park.

The units extend to approximately 844 sq ft and benefit from 5.6m internal eaves height, power floated concrete floor, 3 phase electricity, telecom and unisex disabled WC.

Ben Duly, Business Space, Goadsby, pictured left, said: “We were delighted with the continued success at Westcroft Business Park which shows the continued demand for small industrial/warehouse premises.”

Goadsby is marketing Unit 9 at Westcroft Business Park, also 844 sq ft.

It’s the final remaining unit at the business park.


Firm celebrates tenth anniversary of Corporate Chartered status

Strategic Solutions Financial Services is celebrating its tenth anniversary of Corporate Chartered status this month.

It’s the highest designation any firm can be awarded by the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) and the Personal Finance Society (PFS), the two largest professional bodies in financial services.

Westbourne-based Strategic Solutions first opened its doors in 2010 when the four founding partners – Jefferson Fawcett, Allan Cruse, Kevin Forbes and Giles Wellington, pictured – all with backgrounds in finance, came together.

The aim was to build a firm of the highest standard possible.

It achieved the accolade in May 2012, celebrating the achievement with a party at Koh Thai, attended by the Mayor of Bournemouth among others.

During the last decade the number of individual Chartered Financial Planners in the firm has grown steadily through a professional training programme.

There are now 18 financial planners at that level or above.

Several others are very close to attaining ‘Gold Standard’, one of the highest numbers for independent financial advice firms in the country.

Jefferson, Chief Investment Officer, said: “Being corporate chartered isn’t just about having some stamp of approval demonstrating our excellence, it’s about being the very best we can be for our clients.”