From home to West Kent Housing
25 June 2012
Kent jobs for Kent young people provides 15 new
Fifteen young people are getting out of the house to take up an
apprenticeship with West Kent Housing Association.
The community-based business, which provides affordable homes
and services to people living in the county, is now providing a
foot on the career ladder for a number of young people who have
been unemployed for more than three months.
It has all been made possible by the Kent jobs for Kent young
people scheme. Kent County Council has invested
£2million to help local employers take on more apprentices.
Businesses could take advantage of a £2,000 grant towards the
employments costs – add in some national funding, wherever
possible, and that figure more than doubles to £4,275.
James Woods is one of the 15 who have got a lucky break. He
said: “I’ve been on work experience placements before but this is
the first time I’ve been offered a job with serious training and
the chance to do something I enjoy that helps other people. I’ve
been trying to get into work for a long time but there aren’t many
jobs and when there are, there aren’t many people willing to give a
young person a chance.”
Signing up for Kent jobs for Kent young people is really easy
and hassle free. An apprenticeship team is available at the end of
a phone on 0800 10 18 2 24 or by emailing email@example.com
Leader of Kent County Council Paul Carter said: “James’s
experience is similar to a number of young people and it is for him
and many others like him that the county council launched Kent jobs
for Kent young people. West Kent Housing Association deserves great
credit for providing 15 apprenticeships.
“We are working very hard to maximise the apprenticeship
opportunities for young people. Unemployment figures are far, far
too high in this country and we have put in £2million alongside
national subsidy to create a scheme that declutters the bureaucracy
for businesses wanting to take on an apprentice. The cost to
employers is now as little as £52 a week to take on better skilled,
better motivated young people. It is good for business, good for
the young person.”
The West Kent apprentices will be employed in a range of roles
across the organisation and its charitable subsidiary including
plumbing, administration, youth work and housing support.
Will Campbell-Wroe, Managing Director of West Kent’s community
development charity West Kent Extra, said: “We are pleased to be
able to work closely with Kent County Council to create these
exciting new apprenticeships at West Kent. We know that the
young people who come to West Kent will have a great experience
that will hopefully set them on a career path they will
“We see a large number of young people who struggle to get that
first opportunity in the workplace and we are pleased to be able to
offer them challenging and creative roles that will support them
and the communities they live in. But we know this isn’t all
about the young people, they have many things to teach us as an
organisation and these new roles give many of our own staff a first
experience of line management.
“We believe that these new posts will benefit the individuals,
West Kent as an organisation, the Kent community and the Kent
economy, so it was an easy decision for us an organisation to say
yes to apprenticeships ”
When an employer gets in touch with Kent County Council, a
member of the apprenticeship team will meet them to discuss their
requirements and guide them through the recruitment process,
supplying draft contracts, job descriptions and identifying the
best training programme. The majority of form-filling is completed,
the employer just needs to read it and sign.
On a recent visit to Kent, the Secretary of State for Education,
Iain Duncan Smith, hailed the youth employment scheme, describing
it as ‘an excellent innovation’.