Hundreds of paid, six-month job placements for young people are being advertised as part of a new government scheme to help people aged 16 to 24 secure employment.
Employers ranging from The Alnwick Garden in Northumberland, to Newcastle United FC are recruiting as part of the new Kickstart scheme.
Michelle Rainbow, Skills Director at the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (North East LEP), explains: “Kickstart is designed to help young people who are receiving Universal Credit take the first steps into their future careers. Whether they want to be an engineer, a chef or a social media expert, there are positions available which will help them gain the skills and experience they will need in the future.”
Automotive manufacturer, Unipres, is one of the businesses that has already taken on placements through the Kickstart scheme.
Rob Dodds, Apprentice Coordinator at Unipres, explained: “The reason we got involved is that it’s an ideal opportunity to give young people a chance to gain valuable experience in the workplace.
“They’re indispensable to the business as well – it’s another form of recruitment for us and these are the future stars. It’s a win-win situation for the business and for the placements.”
20-year-old Ehsan Izadi, who is working as part of the Quality Assurance team at Unipres, said: “I was working in a pizza shop but when COVID came around, the shop was closed. I was looking for a job and saw the opportunity with Unipres. It was easy to apply through the job centre and it was a big opportunity for me.
“I like learning and improving my CV – if you have six months experience at Unipres it’s really important for your CV.”
Joanne Jobling, Service Leader for DWP in Northumberland Tyne & Wear said: “We have a fantastic range of opportunities available for young people in the North East which can now be seen on the North East LEP website. Between now and the end of December we would like to encourage employers to get involved, and help to shape the workforce of the future.”
Kickstart vacancies are listed online at https://www.northeastlep.co.uk/kickstart-opportunities/. They are open to people aged 16 to 24 who are receiving Universal Credit.
Businesses in the North East can apply to join the Kickstart Scheme through the North East Growth Hub, at NorthEastGrowthHub.co.uk (search for ‘Kickstart’).