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Careers given kick-start as Swansea Council helps young people

Credit: Swansea Council

Young people are full of praise for Swansea Council endeavours to help them find work.

In the past seven months, the council has placed more than 40 unemployed people aged 16-24 into positions with local businesses and has secured more than 200 placement opportunities within the Swansea area.

Their roles, under the UK Government’s Kickstart scheme, range from medical receptionist to graphic designer. Businesses taking them on range from construction firms to those in retail and hospitality.

Natalie Davies, aged 24, began a Kickstart placement with UK-wide dance school Tiny Toes – with their head office in Gowerton, in March. She said: “Working with Tiny Toes with the support of Kickstart has met and exceeded my expectations of learning.”

Caitlin Morgan, 19, began a Kickstart placement with the city’s St Thomas Surgery in February. She said: “This experience has built my confidence. It’s pushed me out of my comfort zone and I’ve learnt that I’m capable of handling difficult situations.”

Chloe Moses, 22, began a placement with the surgery in April. She said: “This opportunity has benefitted me massively in many ways such as increasing my independence and maturity, as well as by giving me a new skillset with the ongoing training I have and continue to receive.”

Sandra Kiley, practice manager at the surgery, said: “We’ve had two Kickstart placements and they’ve both fitted in well; we’re pleased we took part in the project.”

Steve Jones, managing director of SJ Marketing, said: “I’ve been very impressed with the two employees we’ve taken on. They’re hard working and willing to learn about all aspects of the business.”

Cabinet member Robert Francis-Davies said: “Swansea is leading the way out of the pandemic – as our £1bn regeneration programme illustrates. We want to help young Swansea people into work – and we know that employers do too.”

Cabinet member Alyson Pugh said: “I’m delighted that employers and personnel feel so positively about our work with Kickstart. This scheme will mean more skills and confidence among the local workforce.”

As an approved Kickstart Gateway the council can help employers secure funding to cover these placements.

Kickstart provides funding for employers to take on those on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment. The £2bn initiative is part of the UK Government’s plan for jobs across England, Scotland and Wales.