Local MP Gordon Henderson, in partnership with Sittingbourne and Sheerness JobCentres, welcomed over 30 local businesses on Friday (17th September) morning to their Kickstart Scheme Seminar, where they were encouraged to offer 6-month work placements to young people on Universal Credit.
The £2 billion Kickstart Scheme was set up by the Government in November and has created 331 placements, for claimants aged between 16 - 24 years old, in Sittingbourne and Sheppey so far. This has been achieved with the help of the 101 local employers who are already taking part. Those employers received £1,500 of grant funding per placement to help with setup and training costs, with the Government fully funding the pay and National Insurance for 25 hours work a week and, where necessary, offering transport-to-work assistance for the young people taking part.
Mr Henderson told SFM News: "The Kickstart Scheme is a brilliant Government initiative, which has benefits for both the employer and the young person taking part, because it funds placements in local businesses that provide work experience. In order for local youngsters to realise their potential and fill the many jobs that are being created locally, it’s important they gain experience and confidence in a workplace. That’s what the Kickstart Scheme helps them achieve and I hope many more local employers will take part in Kickstart and help give those young people a positive start to their working life.’
Liz Elsden, Partnership Manager for the Sittingbourne and Sheerness Jobcentres, told SFM News: "It was great to see so many local employers attend this event to find out more about the Kickstart Scheme and how they can support young people in the community get that first step on the employment ladder. Young people in Swale need the support of local employers to help build their confidence and skills by offering them a placement under the Government’s fully funded Kickstart Scheme.’
For more information about the Kickstart Scheme, please visit: https://kickstart.campaign.gov.uk/.