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Colleges have vital role to play in delivering Young Person Guarantee

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Growing the Young Person’s Guarantee 

This afternoon the Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Skills and Culture Fiona Hyslop launched the Young Persons Guarantee in the Scottish Parliament. 

It aims to see every 16-24 year old in Scotland either in paid employment, enrolled in education, actively involved on an apprenticeship or training programme, or engaged on a formal volunteering or supported activity programme within the next two years.

Fife College has welcomed the provisions announced by the Scottish Government today to help support young people who are set to be hit by the economic issues cased by the Coronavirus pandemic. As part of the education section of the Guarantee, Fife College joined several other colleges in suggesting initiatives to the Scottish Government that could help develop skills in the short term.

Commenting on the announcement, Fife College said that with the predicted rise in unemployment over the coming months all colleges were going to play a vital role in delivering the Young Person Guarantee.

Vice-Principal at Fife College, Dorothee Leslie, said:

“Young people are set to face many challenges as Scotland recovers from this pandemic, and it’s only right that we do everything we can to support them.

“The Young Person Guarantee is an appropriate response to this crisis, and its focus on providing access to education is welcome.

“We’re pleased to be working with the Scottish Government on how we can best help at this time, and we will continue dialogue with them on further opportunities over the coming months.

“Colleges are going to play a vital role in our economic recovery, and are used to adapting to the needs of individuals and employers in order to deliver the skills our economy needs.

“We stand ready to help train and upskill all young people in order to help best prepare them for the future jobs market, and look forward to welcoming more students to Fife College as part of this programme.”

Shona Struthers 100x100Shona Struthers, Chief Executive of Colleges Scotland, said:

“We are delighted that the Young Person’s Guarantee is being implemented, especially given the deep economic crisis that COVID-19 has created. 

“It is vital that all young people have access to the full range of opportunities and support that will enable them to reach their potential, whether that’s going to college, university, an apprenticeship programme, training, fair employment and work experience, or participating in a formal volunteering programme.

“The college sector is committed to working even closer with schools, universities, businesses, and key stakeholders to ensure that Scotland’s people and economy can successfully emerge from COVID-19 and thrive. We look forward to working with partners to take this important initiative forward.”

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The first organisations to back the Young Person’s Guarantee have been announced by Economy Secretary Fiona Hyslop 

In a collective effort to help young people, the Scottish Government has been joined by SSE, Capgemini, NHS Lothian and Standard Life Aberdeen in making the commitment to ensure everyone aged from 16 to 24 has the opportunity of work, education or training.

The Guarantee, backed by an additional £60 million investment, aims to give all young people in Scotland the chance to succeed despite the economic impacts of coronavirus (COVID-19)

Organisations backing the Guarantee make five pledges to help young people at this critical time:

  1. prepare young people for the world of work through work experience, volunteering and work-based learning opportunities
  2. engage with and provide opportunities to young people who face barriers to work
  3. create work-based learning, training and upskilling opportunities for young people
  4. create jobs and opportunities for young people through apprenticeships, paid internships and work experience
  5. create an inclusive workplace to support learning and enable young people to meet their potential

Economy Secretary Fiona Hyslop said:

“The pandemic is having a disproportionate economic effect on our young people, reducing job opportunities just as they are starting out on their careers. I am delighted to be launching the Young Person’s Guarantee today to help ensure their prospects are not permanently damaged

“I want to thank the early trailblazers who have backed our ambitious initiative and recognise the importance of supporting our young people.

“The leadership of employers from across Scotland and from all sectors will be key in providing the opportunities that will make this Guarantee a success.  This employer leadership will build on our strong track record of tackling youth unemployment through our industry led Youth Employment Strategy – Developing the Young Workforce.   

“We are encouraging employers to come forward and join what is a crucial intervention to ensure that we capture the potential of our young people and prevent coronavirus (COVID-19) leaving a lasting impact on the employment opportunities of our future workforce.

“I want Scotland’s young people to know we are right behind you, we want you to be successful and we will do everything we can to give you the opportunities you need.”

Sandy Begbie, who helped to design the Edinburgh Guarantee, said:

“In the spring, I was delighted to be asked to develop a strategy to establish a Young Person Guarantee for all 16 to 24-year-olds in Scotland.  The ambition is clear, I want every young person who is unemployed to be given an opportunity of a job, apprenticeship, education, training or volunteering.  I strongly believe we must act now and decisively. Our young people are an asset and a credit to Scotland.”

The Young Person’s Guarantee was one of the main recommendations of the Advisory Group on Economic Recovery.

The £60 million Young Person’s Guarantee is part of a total of £100 million for employment support and training announced by the Scottish Government to tackle employment challenges. £10 million of this will be used to support a range of measures to recruit and retain apprentices.

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