Young people are the hardest hit when it comes to struggling to find jobs. With no work record and no real work experience under their belts, employers can be hesitant when it comes to taking them on. But now a new work experience scheme has been set up to help 18 to 21 year olds get into the jobs market.

The scheme is being run by Jobcentre Plus, which from 14 February will match employers and young job seekers to work placements of between 2 and 8 weeks. Whilst on work experience job seekers will continue to receive their benefits and they may be eligible for funding for travel and childcare costs.

The Local Employer team in Darlington have already started working with several businesses across the town, gaining their commitment to provide quality work placements for job seekers. The first local business to sign up is Darlington engineering company Henry Williams Ltd. Managing Director Andrew Nelson says why they are keen to support the initiative:
“Work experience is an excellent way for young people to gain the practical experience that can really give them a start in the jobs market. We all know it’s hard to get a job with no experience, and you can’t get experience without a job.

This is our centenary year in working in Darlington, and we pride ourselves in putting something back into the local community whenever we can – offering Work Experience through Jobcentre Plus will help us do just that, by helping young people get that first foot on the ladder.”

Taking part in the scheme is free for employers and an opportunity for companies of all sizes from any sector to play their part in the Government’s Big Society.

Jobcentre Plus Employer Engagement Manager for Darlington, Paul Robson explains:

“I would urge all businesses in Darlington to consider offering placements of between 2 and 8 weeks for their local young people. It will help an individual gain valuable insight into the world of work.”

Employers wanting to get more information, or sign up for the scheme can speak to Paul directly by contacting Darlington Jobcentre on: 01325 38 50 60.