Barclays LifeSkills and local businesses spark young people's ambitions in Blackpool

A new programme of intensive intervention is preparing secondary school students in Blackpool for the world of work by seizing the support of local businesses.

Delivered in partnership between Barclays LifeSkills, The Talent Foundry and Blackpool Council, the programme is targeting 40 local young people to develop their employability skills and better understand how to access the various opportunities available in Blackpool.

The aims of the programme are to raise the confidence and aspirations of students whilst developing their core transferable skills.

Students learn about a variety of topics including financial capability, being enterprising and solving problems.

Local businesses and organisations from different industries also give young people insights into what their local area has to offer them.

The programme is designed to help young people from a range of backgrounds.

It includes:

Direct volunteer-to-student conversations raising awareness of skills and how to develop them as well as the range of local sectors and guiding next steps

Workshops in and out of school led by an expert Talent Foundry facilitator using Barclays LifeSkills resources

Guest speaker contributions from local businesses to inspire and spark ambition

A mock interview with volunteer professionals to enhance young people’s employability skills ahead of embarking on their career journey

Schools taking part include Educational Diversity, Highfield Leadership Academy and South Shore Academy.

The programme started in November 2023, and to date, each participating school has had two in-school workshops. These workshops looked at identifying young people’s ambitions and building their CV writing skills.

The sessions have received fantastic feedback from students. One said: “The facilitators have such a positive attitude and are encouraging and inclusive with the students.”

Barclays LifeSkills led intensive interventions in other areas of the UK show that these have had a significant impact on young people.

Activity in Bury found that 91% of students reported an improvement of confidence in themselves and their aspirations, and just under 90% of students said they were more open to different possible jobs and careers.

For educators working with young people, Barclays LifeSkills provides free lesson plans, interactive films, and engaging tools to deliver lessons throughout education to inspire them about the world of work and develop their employability and money skills.

There are also home learning resources for parents and carers covering topics such as online safety, money management and employability skills that are free to access.

The Talent Foundry is keen to hear from local businesses with an interest in supporting the next generation and reaping the benefits of a well-skilled local workforce to take part in remaining programme sessions.

To find out how to support the initiative, email David Mawby from The Talent Foundry: David.mawby@talentfoundry.org.uk

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