A new LGT mentoring programme is supporting young Gypsies and Travellers into work, providing a gateway to further training, independence and employment.
The Bright Futures programme is aimed at young people aged 16-21 who have finished or did not complete school and want to embark on jobs or further training but are struggling without experience, qualifications or good literacy skills.
“We’re working with young people to create a bridge between college and work placements, to give them the kind of experience they need,” says Geraldine Lindsay, LGT’s Skills and Development Coordinator.
“We work with them to increase their learning and interest. By helping them get work experience and links with employers, we hope we can give them confidence and a portfolio, so that they can go into vocational training or start their own business.”
The programme is currently mentoring young people from Hackney, Enfield, Haringey Newham and Tower Hamlets, and is continuing to interview and recruit. LGT works with each person to identify skills and interests, and then makes links with businesses and colleges to set up work placements. Visits and placements have so far been established in hair and beauty, design, retail, construction, building, painting and decorating.
“The young people have been inspired talking to people who run their own businesses,” says Geraldine Lindsay. “It’s shown them what they can achieve if they want to. We’re looking at encouraging their transferrable skills and using them to start their own business, so they can stay part of their community but also take a step out of it.”
For further information about the Bright Futures initiative, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Pictured: fashion designer Jess Flint meeting some Bright Futures participants in her studio