- Posted by: Mike Hedges MS
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Mike Hedges, MS welcomes launch of the Young Person’s Guarantee
Welsh Labour’s Member of the Senedd for Swansea East, Mike Hedges, has welcomed the launch of the Welsh Labour Government’s ambitious Young Person’s Guarantee.
The Young Person’s Guarantee, one of Welsh Labour’s key election pledges, will help ensure there is no lost generation in Wales following the COVID-19 pandemic by providing everyone under 25 with the offer of work, education, training, or self-employment.
The comprehensive package is designed to provide the right support at the right time and meet the diverse needs of young people across Wales. This includes new user friendly services to help young people find opportunities more easily.
Phase one of the Guarantee will provide young people aged 16 to 24 in Wales with access to:
- one simple route to access the Young Person’s Guarantee via the Working Wales service – support and advice from advisers will be provided in a range of ways, including virtually, on the high street and through improved outreach facilities across Wales;
- self-employment advice and support;
- traineeships which provide work experience and training;
- training and wage incentives via the ReAct programme;
- a place on one of the Welsh Government’s outreach Community Employability programmes;
- help to find an apprenticeship;
- a new course search platform, for those wanting to enter further education or higher education, to make it easier to find their choice;
- a referral to one of the programmes funded by other partners, such as DWP and Local Authorities.
Welcoming the ambitious plans, Mike Hedges MS said:
“At the Senedd election in May I stood on a platform that promised to ensure that no young person would be left behind as a result of the pandemic, so I’m really pleased that our Welsh Labour Government is already delivering on this key commitment to the people of Wales.
“This support is crucial to young people as they navigate their way into the world of work and decide what they want to do next – we know that they hold the key to Wales’ future success.
“It is more important than ever that young people are supported to gain the skills and experience they need to succeed, whether that’s in employment, education or starting their own business. The Young Person’s Guarantee will make a real difference.”
As part of the plan, Working Wales (https://workingwales.gov.wales/) has become the single gateway for every 16 to 24 year old in Wales to access the Guarantee. This builds on the already strong and successful model of delivering careers guidance and signposting support. They are also trialling a new Job Matching service, to assist young people with securing employment and to help employers fill vacancies.
The Welsh Government has said the next steps in the development of the guarantee will include:
- Regional Skills Partnerships will hold engagement events to shape the provision of the Young Person’s Guarantee within their area of responsibility.
- A series of focus groups will be held with young people between now and December to help understand how they view the support available, what they want to see and the barriers they face.
Notes to editors:
The guarantee is supported by wide ranging provision which ensures young people can take up effective support that works for them. In this year alone the Welsh Labour Government has invested:
- £390m in Sixth Forms and Further Education, providing thousands of young people with a range of academic and vocational courses; £16.4m in Educational Maintenance Allowances; £5m for extra places and an additional £33m to support young people in education to recover from the impact of the pandemic.
- £152m in apprenticeships, including an £18.7m investment in employer incentives to recruit and support young people. Whilst this is an all age programme, around 39% of all apprentices starting in 2019/20 were under the age of 25.
- Around £1.22bn in Student support for 2021-22. In the past year, Ministers have also provided £122m of additional funding to build capacity and to enable our universities to increase their hardship funding and support services to students affected by the pandemic.
- £70m per annum to help people into work through a range of employability programmes including ReAct, Traineeships and Community Employabilty Programmes.