PET-Xi is pleased to announce it has been awarded a £1.1m contract to support 780 young people not in education, employment or training (NEET) in Warwickshire during the next three years.
Following our appointment as a prime deliverer for the Department for Work and Pensions and in conjunction with strategic partner Warwickshire County Council, PET-Xi has developed its barrier-breaking ‘Positive Futures’ programme to assist any 15-24 year old in Warwickshire not currently in education, employment or training – or at risk of becoming so.
These young people, who have generally become disengaged from education and are furthest from the job market, will be provided with bespoke, tailored packages including the chance to gain qualifications, employability skills and motivational support. The overall aim is to help them progress onto a traineeship, an apprenticeship, further training or a job.
“Whatever their problem we will help,” said PET-Xi’s joint managing director Fleur Sexton. “Young people who have become disengaged and fallen off their educational path are often facing huge challenges in their lives, such as debt or addiction or single parenthood and therefore have huge barriers to overcome.
“We will be sending our ‘champions’ – specially trained mentors – out into the communities of Warwickshire to deliver the support those young people need to help them find a rewarding and exciting career path.”
Because some young people’s situation makes it difficult for them to travel, PET-Xi will take the training to them, working with local community leaders in venues such as church halls and sports clubs. The aim is to reach out to 780 youngsters during the three-year programme, which runs until September 2019.
Each participant will have their own mentor/champion, who will provide a bespoke training package of support over a 12-month period and keep in touch with them for six months afterwards to ensure that their chosen route of future training or employment is working for them.
The latest government figures show that 843,000 people aged 16-24 were considered ‘NEET’ in the second quarter of 2016, representing 11.7% of the age group. The West Midlands is one of the regions of England with the highest proportion of 16-24 year old who fit this category, at 15.1 per cent.
“Because we are a local company with local knowledge, we can really get to the grass roots, including some of Warwickshire’s most deprived and rural areas,” continued Fleur. “We are really keen to get young people more involved with their local communities because we know how feeling proud of where you live and work has benefits for the area and the individual.
“Local businesses are helping too by offering to pay for childcare and transport where it’s needed for example.
“We are already nationally renowned for working with disengaged young people, so I’m absolutely delighted to have this fantastic opportunity to expand our work in the local area and help young people in Warwickshire overcome their problems and go on to achieve their full potential.”
Anyone interested in getting involved with the scheme – either as a participant or a supporter by helping with transport or venues – please contact PET-Xi on 02476 42 0310 .