The government has announced a new collaboration with children’s charity Barnardo’s, to support those leaving care into work
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has today announced a partnership with leading children’s charity Barnardo’s. The collaboration aims to provide young people leaving care with the opportunity to gain work experience via placements in Barnardo’s high street shops, assisting them in gaining necessary skills to move into employment.
Placements aim to help these young people to develop both practical and soft skills in a supportive, real working environment. Those on placements will work alongside trained staff and volunteers.
Currently, over 12,000 young people between the ages of 16-18 leave care in England each year, with numbers rising. Many have complex needs, with the risk of long-term unemployment. The DWP and Barnardo’s are exploring other options for a longer-term partnership, which could help deliver a broader range of support for those leaving care in hopes of supporting them to thrive in the workplace.
This new partnership hopes to build young people’s confidence whilst providing the opportunity to develop and practice employability skills.
Javed Khan, Chief Executive of Barnardo’s, said:
“Barnardo’s is really proud to be at the forefront of this innovative scheme. Sadly too many young people leaving the care system miss out on the opportunities they deserve and face a future without hope.
“This new partnership gives care leavers valuable experience in Barnardo’s innovative high street shops and helps them get ready to move into paid employment or further training. We are also exploring how we can work with job centres and employers to improve care leavers’ access to a wider range of support, aimed at developing their practical skills and resilience.
“As well as the direct benefits to care leavers, working in our stores will also help generate income to boost the charity’s frontline – so we can continue to transform the lives of vulnerable children and families across the UK. It’s a win-win situation.
“Many people struggle with the transition from care into employment, with those first steps onto the career ladder often being the hardest. This scheme will help boost people’s chances of securing fulfilling employment, enabling them to access the benefits that work can bring.”
Running over 1,000 services across the country, Barnardo’s helps over 300,00 children, young people, parents, and carers each year.