New partnership launches innovative scheme to reduce youth unemployment

Thousands of unemployed young people across the Tees Valley are set to be helped into learning and work thanks to an innovative £7m scheme.

7 Apr 2016

The Thirteen Group, Coast & Country Housing, North Star Housing, Actes and New College Durham have joined forces in a unique partnership to successfully win European funding to deliver a vital new Youth Employment Initiative (YEI).

Through the scheme, people aged 15 to 29 who are classed as NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training), will be able to access specialist support thanks to the European Social Fund and Youth Employment Initiative funding.

Chris Smith, Director of Business Development for Thirteen, said: “Housing has a really important part to play in the skills and employment support sector and this consortium is a really new way of delivering such a vital service that can impact massively on the area.

“The three housing providers not only house thousands of people across the area, we also have assets in the heart of communities, such as buildings, that can be used to deliver the project. At Thirteen, we are also one of the largest employers in the Tees Valley, which brings its own opportunities as part of the scheme."

Careers advisors will be on hand to identify a range of training and practical support options, including mentoring, apprenticeships, job placements and further education, to find a job that will enable them to reach their potential.

The project will also include a flexible fund to assist young people in overcoming the barriers such as the lack of the right skills preventing them progressing and finding the right employment.

Sandra Phillips, Chief Executive of Actes, said: "We are delighted to be working in partnership with Thirteen, Coast & Country, North Star and New College Durham to utilise our expertise of working with young people to help them move closer to/or into employment, and in doing so improve the Tees Valley economy.”

Director of Customer Services at Coast & Country, Tracy O’Neill, said: “We are very pleased to be part of this important project, delivering support for young people across Redcar and Cleveland who may be struggling to gain work or training. We have considerable experience and expertise in providing support through our own initiatives and look forward to working with New College Durham and the other partners offering help, advice and practical solutions to enable young people to reach their full potential.”

More details

For more details about the project, contact New Directions on: