Fresh approaches to supporting young women from marginalised communities to get into work are underway in London, Birmingham and the South of England.
Young women leaving care in Birmingham, female prisoners in Kent, and 16-30 year old women from BAME communities across London are just some of the hundreds to receive employment support and training, thanks to funding provided by The Berkeley Foundation's Community Investment Fund.
Grants have just been awarded to six new charity partnerships which will pilot new approaches, join up services and expand proven employment programmes. One-to-one business mentoring, career-specific training, apprenticeships, and job brokerage are some of the approaches on offer.
The £350k Empowering Young Women into Work funding programme was set up to improve access to employment for young women from underrepresented groups. The ultimate aim is to reduce barriers to work and expose more young women to sustainable career opportunities.
Young people aged 16-24 face the highest levels of unemployment in Britain. Young women face higher levels of unemployment than young men.
A 2017 report for the Young Women's Trust found that economically inactive young women, in particular, tend to be 'written off', and are offered limited support.
The Foundation's latest grant programme commits grants between £25,000 - £70,000 over the next two years. Funded projects will be delivered by The Baytree Centre, Beating Time, City Gateway, Leadership Through Sport & Business, Women into Construction CIC and Young Women's Trust.
The projects will span London including the boroughs of Lambeth, Barking & Dagenham and Tower Hamlets. Programmes will also be delivered in Kent and the City of Birmingham.
The Empowering Young Women into Work projects are:
Caroline Guarnaccia, CEO of The Baytree Centre, said:
"The Baytree Centre, High Trees Community Development Trust and Spiral Skills are part of a strong and well established VCS partnership based in Lambeth. With the support of The Berkeley Foundation we will be delivering a 2 year long programme 'Women into Work' (WIW) which will support some of the most excluded young women in the borough to gain both the skills and emotional capabilities to prepare and access the job market. We are so grateful to The Berkeley Foundation for their generous grant for this much needed work".
Sally Dickinson, Head of the Berkeley Foundation said:
"The Berkeley Foundation is committed to helping young people overcome barriers to work and access decent employment. Each of the organisations we are funding is working to empower young women with the skills, confidence and tools to take their first steps into employment. There are six exciting, collaborative organisations here and I can't wait to see what we can achieve by working together."
For more information about the six funded projects, visit www.berkeleyfoundation.org.uk
The Berkeley Foundation's current Community Investment Fund programme - Skills for Positive Futures - is open to applications between 3 June - 3 July 2019 and will support prevention and early intervention work with young people at risk of exclusion and vulnerable to involvement in violence.