UKSA has announced that six unemployed young people will embark on a new career path by joining a new training programme designed to equip them with the skills and work experience to find full time jobs.
A second scheme will see a further six disadvantaged young people train to become RYA (Royal Yacht Association) Assistant Instructors.
With funding from the Job Centre Plus, UKSA has created Change Direction, a new seven week programme for local unemployed young people to address and remove barriers to employment.
Out of 22 unemployed 18 to 24-year-olds identified by the Job Centre, six have been chosen to complete the training, which focuses on building better bridges into work.
The scheme was devised by UKSA’s Youth Development Co-ordinator Lee Jones who said: “The programme focuses on personal development, building their self-esteem and exploring all of different pathways into maritime. They have already completed their Powerboat Level one and participated in some sailing.”
Phase two involves a five day residential at the UKSA base in Cowes, Isle of Wight which includes training in watersports and yachting under the expert tuition and guidance of UKSA’s instructors and Industry Guidance mentoring team to improve team work, motivational and job hunting skills.
The students will then undergo four weeks work experience alongside the watersports, maintenance and hospitality departments and will get the chance to visit other marine businesses based on the Isle of Wight.
“Through their experiences at UKSA, young people will either return to do some volunteering, or go on to find employment,” said Lee Jones. “We will use the positive outcomes we are already experiencing to campaign for support for future programmes.”
UKSA’s second initiative, the Go Beyond programme, runs from November 14 to December 16 and is funded by The Prince’s Trust and Big Lottery Fund. Six young people will undergo training to become RYA Assistant Dinghy Instructors and then go onto to work for Neilson Holidays if they successfully qualify.
Simon Davies, Director of Youth Development at UKSA, said: “With youth unemployment approaching one million and funding for longer term apprenticeships so difficult to source, we are determined to find effective new ways to give deserving young people a hand up as opposed to a hand out.
“The Change Direction and Go Beyond programmes are both important parts of our work to provide effective and long-term solutions to worklessness.”
More than 70 per cent of former UKSA Apprentices are now successfully working in the international watersports industry. They include Darren Nolan, (25), from Chichester, who left the Fifth Royal Artillery Regiment and worked briefly in security until he spotted an advert for the Prince’s Trust Get Into Maritime programme.
Darren, who completed three tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, trained as a watersports instructor at UKSA, funded by grants from The Prince’s Trust and other grant giving organisations. After completing his training, Darren went to work for Neilson Holidays in Greece and has since been nominated for an award to celebrate his outstanding success.
UKSA has worked to provide life changing outcomes for young people for almost 25 years. In that time, the charity has helped more than 100,000 individuals challenge personal boundaries, develop personal and employment skills and embark on fulfilling maritime careers.
This has been achieved by harnessing high quality maritime education, mentoring and support and making it available to all regardless of their background and ability.
An increasing number of young people are choosing the maritime sector as a career choice over and above University or other employment sectors. They are inspired by the rewards of a career with global opportunities.
UKSA trains 800 people each year for maritime employment, and works with a diverse range of employers, from the superyacht owner Roman Abramovich to the Nielson Holidays and PGL activity holidays to help them into employment.
UKSA was founded by the retail entrepreneur Noel Lister. The charity celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2012.
Visit www.uska.org website.
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