@Catch22, The @PrincesTrust and Apprentice Nation (@AppNationUK) join forces to secure major contract to help up to 1,500 young people move closer to work 

Young people aged 16-25 who are at risk of serious violence are set to benefit from an inspiring new employability programme delivered by Catch22, The Prince’s Trust and Apprentice Nation. 

The Creating Opportunities Programme – funded by the Home Office and HM Treasury – will help up to 1,500 young people develop the skills they need to make a successful transition into work, training and apprenticeships.  

The programme aims to support participants by: 

  • Reducing risk factors and increasing the protective factors for serious violence
  • Demonstrating progress in their distance travelled towards employment
  • Improving their overall physical and mental wellbeing

Mat Ilic, Chief Development Officer at Catch22, said: 

“Young people’s employment prospects and mental wellbeing have been disproportionately affected during the Covid-19 pandemic. This is particularly true for those young people who find themselves in a situation where they’re at risk of falling into a life of crime. This programme will address their individual needs, work with them build confidence and explore options when it comes to work and training – and ultimately help them achieve their ambitions.” 

“We’re thrilled to be partnering with The Prince’s Trust and Apprentice Nation – between us we have experience of working across violence reduction and criminal justice, children’s services, education, with national employers and DWP, and have a stellar track record of youth social action, through participative youth programmes such as National Citizen Service.   

Young people facing multiple barriers need high-quality wraparound support. According to Movement to Work, 68% of participants who receive this kind of help sustain their placements and move into work, compared to 32% who don’t. 

All participants on the programme will receive: 

  • One-to-one support from a dedicated Careers Coach to help identify and achieve goals  
  • A personalised support package: featuring a range of tailored workshops, to help with employability skills, job search skills, work experience; agency, self-efficacy, goal setting and the resilience to achieve it; vocational and basic skills; and addressing barriers including health and wellbeing, independent living, housing, and developing life skills
  • Priority access to all the existing programmes that Catch22 and The Prince’s Trust currently offer, including employability support, mentoring and entrepreneurship 
  • Exclusive rewards through Apprentice Nation’s online platform, offering on-demand content and live webinars from popular artists such as Ghetts, Young T & Bugsey, Ray BLK and IAMDDB 
  • Access to our directory of opportunities, including national and local jobs, work experience, Kickstart, apprenticeships, traineeships and training courses 
  • Financial support with a personalised budget to power the career goals of every participant 
  • Mental wellbeing support through the SHOUT texting service 
  • Referrals to other services which address personal challenges  
  • 6 months of ongoing support in your new job, apprenticeship or course  

Ben Marson, Director of Partnerships at The Prince’s Trust, said: 

“The Prince’s Trust is proud to be working with Catch22 and Apprentice Nation on the Creating Opportunities Programme to support young people who have engaged with, or are at risk of engaging with, serious youth violence. The programme will combine the expertise of our three organisations, giving young people access to employment-related services as well as supporting their personal and social development.  

 “We hope that young people who participate on this programme build their confidence and feel supported to take their next steps towards employment, education or training.” 

The programme will initially run until March 2023, with the aim of supporting 1,500 young people into opportunities over the coming 18 months. 

Stephen Greene, CEO RockCorps, Producer of Apprentice Nation said:

“We have admired the work of Catch22 and The Prince’s Trust for many years and so it is an honour to now work alongside them.  At Apprentice Nation, we know that visibility is mission critical and this programme will help bring opportunities to those young people who need them the most. At Apprentice Nation we bring a different slant to career development; as an edutainment platform we want to make learning and development both an enjoyable and meaningful experience; that’s why we work with authentic and relatable music artists to share inspiring messages.  Respect, Tools and Opportunity.” 

The Creating Opportunities programme is open to candidates living in the following areas: 

  • Birmingham 
  • Bradford 
  • Croydon 
  • Hackney 
  • Kingston upon Hull 
  • Lambeth 
  • Leeds 
  • Liverpool 
  • Manchester 
  • Newham 
  • Sandwell 
  • Wolverhampton 

About Catch 22: Catch22 is a social business, designing and delivering services that build resilience and aspiration in people and communities across the UK. Its vision is a strong society were everyone has good people around them, a purpose and a good place to live. Catch22 works across children’s social care, delivers alternative education, gets people into work through apprenticeships and employability programmes, and builds stronger communities through social action, social justice and rehabilitation services. 

About The Prince’s Trust: Youth charity The Prince’s Trust helps young people to develop the confidence and skills they need to realise their ambitions, so that they can live, learn and earn. Founded by The Prince of Wales in 1976, the charity supports 11-30-year-olds who are unemployed, struggling at school and at risk of exclusion.  

Many of the young people helped by The Trust are in or leaving care, facing issues such as homelessness, mental health problems, or have been in trouble with the law. The programmes offered by the charity give vulnerable young people the practical and financial support needed to stabilise their lives, helping develop self-esteem and skills for work. Three in four young people supported by The Prince’s Trust move into work, education or training.  

The Trust has helped over one million young people to date and supports over 100 more each day. 

About Apprentice Nation: Apprentice Nation is a career development platform that uses the power of music to inspire young people to shape their future. Produced by RockCorps and Multiverse, supported by BT and Lucozade, the platform provides support in various formats; mixing learning with entertainment, inspiring youth to get career-ready through free concerts, live webinars and an on-demand learning series. Apprentice Nation works with authentic and credible music artists who not only perform at the concerts but also feature throughout the curriculum content, sharing their own career and life stories and advice. In addition to gaining fundamental skills for the future, participants earn rewards for taking part in the gamified learning opportunities. Celebrating a wide range of career paths, the programme attracts a mix of young people from historically underrepresented backgrounds to help launch them toward a career they love.  As of Spring 2021, the Apprentice Nation community is over 6,500 members. 

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