Four new initiatives, developed to reduce the number of local young people not in employment, education and training, have been launched in the region.
The projects, all focussed around skills, employment and enterprise were announced at an Asian Business Connexions (ABC) event in Newcastle.
ABC, Newcastle College and hundreds of local businesses have all played a part in developing the projects after forming an innovative collaboration, which combines the ideas and knowledge of local education providers and employers. The partnership is the culmination of two years’ worth of research and development, led by Ammar Mirza CBE and aims to help transform the local labour market.
The initiatives include the Primary Inspiration in Education (PIE) project, Wellbeing and Business Bootcamp, the Nandwich and the Brilliant Beacon.
All of the projects are based around enterprise and have been designed to inspire young people to think about their future careers with the support of local employers, such as McDonald’s, Northumbrian Water, Barclays, AmmarM (UK) Limited and Reeds Rains.
Hexham MP Guy Opperman, Paul Woolston, chair of the North East LEP and Carole Kitching, principal of Newcastle College spoke about the challenges the region faces to support young people into employment and increase skills.
They also welcomed the collaboration between business and education as a fantastic step forward in tackling these challenges.
Carole Kitching said: “It is imperative that we find innovative ways to inspire disengaged young people and give them the skills and confidence that will not only prepare them for work, but will help them to make a valuable contribution to society. Business and Education working together can really make a difference.”
The PIE project (Primary Inspiration in Education), whose President is Business Leader Bill Midgley, sets out to address national issues of youth unemployment.
It has developed new and innovative measures to ensure that young people are challenged, inspired and guided into the world of work and given access to established business communities, practical work and business experience and live business scenarios. The aim of the project is to inspire young people to look at business, careers and work as a positive step in their lives.
The Well Being and Business Boot Camp is a two week intensive course aimed at 16-24 year olds looking to develop skills and knowledge both personally and professionally. Delivered in partnership with Newcastle College, the course will be run every month and will include work experience, traineeships, further training, apprenticeships and employment
The Nandwich project has seen Asian Business Connexions (ABC) Curry Club entrepreneurs, Ammar Mirza and Ahmed Khan, working with students from Newcastle College to develop their Nanman fast food concept. Budding chefs from the college’s Lifestyle Academy have been applying their research and devlopment skills to produce the Nandwich – a naan bread based sandwich.
The students worked to a brief that called upon them to examine the supply chain, production and shelf-life, of the product before presenting a pitch to the entrepreneurs.
The Brilliant Beacon is an enterprise and training hub and launchpad for business. ABC has been working with The Beacon to offer a wide range of business start-up and growth support services. From funding to finding staff, training to transformational change, an enterprise centred approach has been developed and will be delivered in collaboration with partners.