by Town and Country Foundation
In April 2016, Town and Country Foundation was awarded a generous grant from the Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust towards our apprenticeship programme. This project is different to other apprenticeships because four young individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds will be offered a living wage instead of the usual statutory rate. The statutory rate of pay for apprentices is £3.30 an hour for 16-19 year olds, or £6.70 for those over 21, often making this opportunity out of reach for those that are most in need.
Research shows that apprentices are 85% more likely to stay in work and earn on average over £100,000 more over their lifetime than their peers.
Through this project, and with support from the Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust, we aim to support four young individuals to launch their careers.
Two apprenticeship positions have been filled so far. Both young people who have secured apprenticeships were referred through Porchlight Young Person Services, an organisation that caters to the most vulnerable young people and adults in Kent (some of which are homeless). Our apprentice, Natasha, is 17 years old and has been working for two months in Business Administration. She has already seen the benefits of this opportunity. Her confidence has grown and her living wage has helped her live independently (outside of Porchlight accommodation). She’s proud to be able to manage her costs effectively. She says that if it wasn’t for this apprenticeship she would be feeling depressed. Her colleagues have also been very positive and said how much they enjoy supporting her and this worthwhile project.
Our programme has also had an unexpected bonus effect! The two apprentices have inspired other young people at Porchlight to brush up their CVs and search for work thereby helping spread the positivity even further.
We’ve been delighted with the progress so far and are very much look forward to seeing what the future has in store for our apprentices. We’ll be recruiting two more apprentices in the coming months. Check back here to read how they are getting on!
Thanks again to the Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust for their generous support.