Flagship scheme sees 11,000 young people in Wales find jobs
More than 11,000 young people have been supported to find jobs during the first year of the Welsh Government’s flagship youth employment programme.
The Young Person’s Guarantee (YPG) provides under 25s in Wales with support to gain a place in education or training, find a job or become self-employed.
Long term, the YPG hopes to ensure 90% of 16-24-year-olds are in education, employment, or training (EET) by 2050 – which is one of the Welsh Government’s National Milestones for improving the well-being of the people of Wales.
The Welsh Government is today publishing the ‘Young Person’s Guarantee – Annual Report 2022’, the first in a series of Generation Z reports which will provide updates on key government commitments.
The report shows there had been over 20,000 interventions delivered via the Welsh Government’s employability services with over 11,000 young people starting on employability programmes since the launch of the YPG in November 2021.
The report has been launched during National Apprenticeship week, with apprenticeships being a key component of the YPG.
The Welsh Government plans to invest an extra £18m in apprenticeships as part of their Draft Budget for 2023-24.
Economy Minister, Vaughan Gething said: “The Welsh Government is fully committed to investing in the lives of young people who need a helping hand to achieve their full potential.
“Whatever the uncertainties we face, we can be sure of one thing – failing to step up to support young people today, guarantees economic failure tomorrow.
“We know young people are struggling with the cost-of-living crisis. So, I’m pleased to confirm we have stepped up and increased the support we’re providing them.
“This will help ensure they have the backing they need to access and stay on these vital programmes, which are so important to their future employment prospects and long-term success.
“It is inspiring to hear how young people, particularly from disadvantaged backgrounds, are accessing support and with the help of our partners such as ITEC, are now looking positively towards their futures.”
Support packages available for young people taking part in initiatives within the Jobs Growth Wales + programme will be increased to help young people during the cost-of-living crisis.
The additional support will include doubling the rate of the Training Allowance and offering a new free meal allowance.
100% of travel costs will now be available to claim temporarily and extension of the eligible age range to enrol in the programme will be updated to 19 years old.
Saide Jones, 18, who has received support from ITEC, said: “I feel ITEC has helped me grow and improve in most aspects in my life, including communication, confidence, and the way I think differently about things.
“They also provide lessons to help with mental health, which has helped me a lot with my own mental health and self-confidence. I have come very far to where I was at the start of my time here. I feel like I’ve grown a lot.”
Gareth Matthews, Director of ITEC said the latest announcement by the Welsh Government ‘brings some really positive changes to the programme.”
He added: “We have been seeing an increasing number of 16-19-year-olds with significant mental health and social anxiety issues which have been exacerbated as a result of them being stuck at home or feeling isolated during the Covid pandemic, as well as the emerging cost of living crisis.
“Whether a young person knows what they want to do or needs the support to help them think about taking the next steps, we can build a tailored programme of support that is individual to them.
“That might be helping them build their qualifications, organising work experience or even offering the support they need to start thinking about career opportunities and what comes next for them.”
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