College to boost work chances for 16-24-year-olds

East Coast College's Lowestoft campus. Photo East Coast College.

East Coast College's Lowestoft campus. Photo: East Coast College - Credit: East Coast College

A coastal college is supporting businesses across Norfolk and Suffolk to access funding through the government’s new Kickstart Scheme.

East Coast College has been approved as a gateway provider for the Kickstart Scheme, helping businesses in both counties access funding to employ 16 to 24-year-olds.

The scheme that helps young people to develop work opportunities and employability skills provides funding to create new six-month job placements for those on Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment.

East Coast College's Great Yarmouth campus. Photo East Coast College

East Coast College's Great Yarmouth campus. Photo: East Coast College - Credit: East Coast College

With East Coast College becoming the first FE college in the country to gain approval as a gateway provider for the scheme, it allows it to access funding to represent smaller employers who want to apply for 29 or less job placements.

In its first round of funding, the college received approval for 34 placements working with 14 different employers in areas such as business admin, engineering, construction and service industries.


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The college is also offering six placements of its own in areas such as business and technical support.

The funding for employers covers the National Minimum Wage - or the National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant - for 25 hours per week for a total of six months, National Insurance contributions and a further £1,500 for employers to help with training and mentoring.

East Coast College Assistant Principal Rachel Bunn. Photo East Coast College

East Coast College Assistant Principal Rachel Bunn. Photo: East Coast College - Credit: East Coast College

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Rachel Bunn, assistant principal for apprenticeships and employer engagement at East Coast College, said: “We were really keen to get involved with this scheme straight away and support local businesses to access this funding.

"We know how important it is to help young people get into work and the benefits it brings to our community.

“For young people the scheme is a fantastic opportunity to gain hands-on experience and develop their employability and work skills.

"For businesses it’s a way of supporting the community, developing social values and inspiring a future workforce.”

Young people are supported into the placements through their Job Centre coach, and any employers who are interested in applying for the scheme through East Coast College can email kickstart@eastcoast.ac.uk

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