Wednesday, January 22, 2014

News: Talent Match funding boost

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Talent Match, a major new jobs initiative that aims to help young unemployed people aged between 18-24 in the Sheffield City Region, has secured £9.8m from the Big Lottery Fund.

A local voluntary / community partnership led by independent charity, Sheffield Futures, Talent Match aims to reach young people from across the city region and provide them with the necessary skills to secure jobs in their local area.

Using the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) vision to create sustainable jobs right across a number of key investment sites, Talent Match will cover areas that will include Sheffield city centre, the Dearne Valley and the Markham Vale / Meden Valley former colliery sites.

It was announced last year that in Rotherham, Voluntary Action Rotherham would act as local management / delivery agent with the Children and Young People Consortium leading on the project that will be delivered between now and 2017.

Nat Sloane, England Chair of the Big Lottery Fund, said: "Youth unemployment is an issue that threatens the hopes of an entire generation as well as our whole economic wellbeing. Talent Match promises to help the very hardest to reach young people to make the most of their skills and ambitions, not just as an end goal, but by giving them a say in how the programme itself is designed and put into practice.

"The funding announced today is a key step on a very exciting journey as it means the real work can now begin. By bringing together employers and the knowledge of key charities, Talent Match will help ensure today's young people have the maximum help and support they need to find a fulfilling and rewarding career."

Announcing the project last year, Andy Barrs, chief executive of Sheffield Futures, said: "Talent Match is a tremendously exciting opportunity for local young people to develop the confidence and skills necessary to secure long-term employment in what is now an increasingly competitive labour market.

"The project aims to support longer-term unemployed young people who need extra help to develop the skills that employers typically require."

21 partnerships in unemployment hotspots across England have secured funding. The number of young people aged between 18-24 claiming jobseekers allowance (JSA) in the Sheffield city region has been steadily declining but still stood at 11,865 in November 2013. There were 2,850 young people aged 24 and under that have been claiming JSA for more than a year.

Sheffield Futures website

Images: Big Lottery Fund

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