This has enabled the young people, to move away from Universal Credit and work in placements at Ryde Town Council for a 6-month period.
Back in September 2020, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced, as part of his ‘Plan For Jobs’ initiative, that the Government was launching a new scheme aimed at giving unemployed young people a future opportunity in employment. As part of this, the Kickstart Scheme provides employers with funding to offer 6-month placements to 16–24-year-olds, working 25 hours per week.
The placements are eligible to young people in receipt of Universal Credit, who are at risk of long-term unemployment.
Ryde Town Council has been keen to take part since the scheme was established, signing up for five placements themselves, and helping other Ryde employers to enroll on the scheme, offering 43 placements between them, with further placements under review with the DWP.
There are currently over 500 young people within the PO33-PO36 areas falling within the Kickstart criteria. The Scheme aims to help those who have been disproportionately hit by the Coronavirus pandemic, providing opportunities to build their skills in the workplace, gain valuable experience, and ultimately improve their chances of finding long-term work.
Kaiya Woodford, currently on placement at Ryde Town Council’s Youth Service, Network Ryde, said:
“Due to the pandemic, I was unable to secure any meaningful work that would also work around the care of my child. With the quiet of the lockdown, and with no other work available for me at the time, I took it upon myself to seek out additional training.
“This role in enabling me to put my education into practice with the support and guidance of an employer. Without the Kickstart Scheme, this role wouldn’t have been available to me, but it will now add valuable experience to my CV, which I hope will put me in a better position to find further work once the placement has ended.”
Shay Dixon, currently on a Facilities placement at Ryde Town Council, commented:
“The Kickstart Scheme has given me a real opportunity to work and learn new skills at the same time. My work is varied, and my colleagues are friendly and supportive. I hope working for Ryde Town Council will give me valuable work experience, and boost my confidence, when looking for other jobs in the future.”
The Kickstart Scheme is currently open to employers registered with Companies House or the Charity Commission, and we would urge businesses to get involved in this innovative scheme and take advantage of the enormous pool of potential out there.