Horizons

A new employability programme – Horizons – delivered by social business @Catch22 launches today, which is set to initially help 400 people who face barriers to work into jobs and training. 

With additional support from JPMorgan Chase, Catch22 is advancing its vision to address the UK employment crisis and empower those furthest from the job market to take a positive first step.  

The Horizons programme will increase the impact of established Catch22 employability services - helping people overcome social barriers to work such as homelessness, mental health or poor education. 

It is one of the first programmes to address both unemployment and underemployment; where work is either low paid, unstable or without opportunities to progress.    

Initially focussed on people in London, the programme will provide participants with: 

  • Support from Career Advisors: Participants will work with Career Advisors to develop a bespoke, aspiration-based career plan. Support will include coaching, relationship-building and practical support (eg. helping someone access housing services). 
  • Group pre-employability support: Participants will work in groups to gain key employability skills: communication; problem-solving; team-working, writing CVs and cover letters; applying for jobs; interview techniques and setting future career goals. 
  • Volunteer-supported inspiration sessions: Volunteers from professional careers will help participants understand their roles and what their jobs are like from the inside.  
  • A menu of technical training options: All participants will be encouraged to complete technical training courses and gain relevant licenses, where it supports their journey.  
  • In-work support: Participants will receive up to 6 months in-work support from the Catch22 team. Participants will be allocated support workers to help them identify any challenges; such as being punctual, adjusting to a new working environment, emotional responses, , and accessing the Catch22 bursary for food or travel in their first week, or any training materials they need. 

Horizons will also provide access to laptops and connectivity support for young people where digital exclusion presents a barrier. 

Kat Dixon, Head of Partnerships at Catch22, said: 

With unemployment rates continuing to rise, we’re determined to help as many people as possible to enter the job market. We’re focusing on young people, low income households and those who face social barriers to work, as they’re being hit particularly hard by the current conditions. 

“The Horizons programme is designed to provide 1:1 guidance alongside group sessions, specific training and in-work support. Our experience of delivering employability programmes tells us that tailoring the offer to meet individual needs is vital if participants are to succeed. 

“We’re aiming to help 20,000 people young people into work over the next three years. And with the support of partners like JPMorgan Chase, we’re confident we can achieve that.” 

Learning from the programme will feed into Catch22’s wider policy work on employability, which looks to ensure those furthest from the job market are properly supported to find sustainable employment. 

Hang Ho, Head of Global Philanthropy EMEA and LATAM at J.P. Morgan Chase, said:  

“The Covid-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on young people’s employment prospects, and those with multiple barriers to work risk being left further. We are excited to collaborate with Catch 22, to support their vital work to transform young people’s lives, and ensure they get vital support to access training and quality work. At JPMorgan Chase, we are committed to supporting an inclusive economic recovery by helping people in communities that have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 become more resilient, improve their financial lives and access the skills needed for stable, well-paying jobs”. 

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