Chichester District Council received funding from the Department for Work and Pensions earlier this year to launch the Chichester Youth Hub.
The initiative is aimed at young people in the neighborhood aged 18 to 24 and currently benefiting from universal credit. Clients are directed to the Carrefour jeunesse at the Employment Centre. The Youth Hub was officially launched on September 29 with an event at District Council offices that showcased the support the Hub can provide and some of the early successes.
Working with local businesses, the Chichester Youth Hub helps clients find jobs, work experience, apprenticeships or Kickstart roles. The Kickstart program is a government program that provides young people with 6-month paid internships to gain key skills and experience that will help them find long-term employment.
The Chichester Youth Hub has already helped young people secure roles with a number of local employers, including teams within Chichester District Council.
“I’m really proud to see the launch of our Youth Hub,” says Councilor Roy Briscoe, Cabinet Member of the Council for Community Services and Culture: “It’s a brilliant new initiative to help our young people find work during what has been a difficult year and a half due to the disruption caused by the pandemic.
“Our youth are key to the future growth of our communities and our district as a whole. By launching the Chichester Youth Hub, we are ensuring that the next generation acquires the skills they need to succeed in an ever-changing world.
“The Department for Work and Pensions has also played a vital role in setting up and running the Chichester Youth Hub and we look forward to continuing to work with their staff.
“And of course, I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to the businesses and local communities involved so far, who have welcomed our customers with open arms and contributed to the success of this program.”
Chichester Youth Center will provide:
- career counseling and guidance;
- skills and personal development;
- support in applying for local job vacancies;
- access to a variety of training and apprenticeship programs; and,
- a place where young people can meet, share experiences and learn from each other in a safe and supportive environment.
Emma Wareham, County Partnerships Manager for the West Sussex Department of Work and Pensions, said: “The Department of Work and Pensions is delighted to be working in partnership with Chichester District Council to set up the Chichester YouthHub.
“This joint venture aims to create new opportunities for our young people to empower themselves, feel capable and be employable. We look forward to working with like-minded colleagues to improve the lives of young people in Chichester.
Client Kieran says, “I’m about to start my Kickstart placement at Hospice St Wilfrid and can’t wait to begin my journey to employment. I found that the Youth Hub staff were willing to work with me and give me the support I needed.
Another client, Mikey, says, “I’ve been with the Youth Hub for just under a month and have found it really helpful. The staff really want to help me and they really care about my future.
“We have five Kickstarters doing internships with us,” says Claire Robinson of the Chichester Community Development Trust (CDDT). “They really change the dynamic of the team because they’re so young, and of course with that comes lots of great, fresh ideas.”
Release date: October 1, 2021