Thursday, February 16, 2012

News: Coalfields apprenticeship programme extended


The Coalfields Regeneration Trust's (CRT) National Apprenticeship Programme is providing a further 255 young people in England's coalfields with apprenticeship and employment opportunities.

Based in Manvers, CRT is an independent regeneration organisation that was established in 1999 to improve the quality of life in Britain's coalfield communities.

The government recently announced a further £22m for the trust on top of the £30m already confirmed for this year and next. CRT will use the funding to help former coalfield communities get back on their feet and secure economic growth for years to come.

This second phase of the Coalfields National Apprenticeship Programme will focus on young people aged between 16 and 25, who are more than twice as likely, to be out of work than older people. However, in recognition of the growing number of young people not in education, employment or training (NEET) over 70% of these apprenticeships will be created for 16 to 18 year olds.

An additional £1.1m investment by the trust brings the number of opportunities afforded to young people in coalfield areas through the programme to nearly 550.

This innovative programme will be spearheaded by the charity, and will be delivered in partnership with local councils and colleges, providing employment opportunities in the private sector.

Rotherham College of Arts and Technology (RCAT) recently secured £20,000 from the trust to support local SME's recruit new apprentices.

Gary Ellis, CEO of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, said: "With the youth unemployment figures spiraling upwards this programme will be a real boost for young people struggling to find work.

"Former coalfield communities have been badly hit by the economic downturn and this has compounded the problems already experienced by young people. This programme is a direct response to help young people into work and create a strong platform for their future aspirations."

The apprenticeships which will provide an opportunity to "earn while you learn" will be available in a wide variety of industries and occupations. Each apprenticeship will run for a minimum of 12 months and young people will start taking up the opportunities over the next three months.

Coalfields Regeneration Trust
RCAT website


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