From education to employment

Traineeships are central to unlocking potential at Centrepoint

Cooking with gas: Minister Justin Tomlinson gets a few kitchen pointers from budding chefs on traineeships at Centrepoint, a leading UK charity for homeless young people.

Minister for Family Support, Housing and Child Maintenance Justin Tomlinson has praised a programme to prepare young people from disadvantaged backgrounds for employment.

Speaking at Centrepoint, a leading UK charity for homeless young people, the Minister for the Department for Work and Pensions saw first-hand how a series of high-quality traineeships are helping to turn lives around and unlock “untapped” potential.

Traineeships are designed to support 16 to 24 year olds and can act as a solid stepping stone, giving young people a taste of working life and the opportunity to gain experience.

They are designed to help them acquire the skills and qualifications they need to secure either an apprenticeship or a job, along with the chance to showcase these skills to employers.

Minister Justin Tomlinson said:

“It is fantastic to see Centrepoint and other charities offering traineeships to young people from a range of backgrounds.

“It’s essential that people are given the opportunities to demonstrate their passion and talents, despite having had difficult childhoods.  

“More and more employers are looking for ways to bring in new talent and support a diverse workforce and I urge others to follow Centrepoint’s lead when planning future employment.”

Founded in 1969, Centrepoint supports over 10,000 homeless young people each year and aims to support them into a home and job, providing services and accommodation in London, Yorkshire, Sunderland and Manchester. They offer traineeships in construction; catering and hospitality; and customer service that incorporate functional skills 

Balbir Chatrik, Centrepoint’s Director of Policy and Communications said:

“Homeless young people are full of potential when it comes to training and employment, just like any other young person

“And more than half of those who completed a traineeship with us last year subsequently gained employment. Lots of employers would like to do more to support disadvantaged young people and I hope that they will recognise traineeships are a brilliant way to do this.”

Many of young the people Centrepoint helps face barriers, such as disruptions to their education or housing insecurity, which can mean they are not always ready to access full time employment opportunities.

They can often be ill-prepared for work in terms of ‘soft’ skills such as presentation, attendance and punctuality. Traineeships help to develop these skills, as well as working more broadly to build self-confidence and the motivation to study further.

About Centrepoint:

  • Founded in 1969, Centrepoint has helped more than 116,000 homeless young people.
  • Centrepoint helps young people gain essential life skills; tackling their physical and mental health issues and moving into education or employment.
  • Centrepoint supports over 10,000 homeless young people each year. They provide accommodation-based and floating support services in London, Yorkshire, Sunderland and Manchester. It also runs the Freephone Centrepoint Helpline. HRH The Duke of Cambridge became Centrepoint’s Patron in 2005.
  • Through policy work, Centrepoint aims to influence public policy, campaigning on behalf of the young people it supports and homeless young people throughout the UK.

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