Press release

Radical scheme to rescue NEETs

Young people who are not in education, employment or training (NEETs) stand to benefit from a new scheme.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

A pioneering scheme to get young people who are NEET (not in education, employment or training) back on their feet kicks off today with charities and businesses given the go-ahead to prove they can turn young people’s lives around in exchange for cash. Funding worth up to £126 million is being made available to organisations across England, who will be paid by results to get 16- and 17-year-olds back into education or training.

The programme, part of the deputy prime minister’s youth contract, is the first to use payment by results to help get NEETs re-engaged. Organisations involved have had to compete for contracts by showing they are able to get young people back on track. In return for proving they are experts in the field, they will be given freedom to tailor and provide support for disadvantaged young people in the way they know best.

Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, said:

Young people who have fallen through the net need tailored support to get back on track. We can’t treat them like round pegs being forced into square holes - if you’re young and have got to the point where you feel on the scrapheap, you need extra help to succeed in life.

Disengaged young people often have complex problems that act as a barrier to getting them learning again, which the government alone can’t deal with. But very often local charities and businesses know what’s going to help them.

That’s why we’re unlocking funding for these organisations to be as creative and innovative as they can, to do whatever it takes, to get the young people who need it most back on their feet. In exchange for this freedom, all we ask is that they get results. It’s a win-win for government, young people and the organisations involved.

Minister for Employment, Chris Grayling, said:

We think payment by results is the best way to ensure that we deliver the best possible support for young people.

It means the providers have to find the very best ways to help them if they’re to be financially successful, so it’s a win-win for everyone.

So far the youth contract has made an encouraging start, with more young people than expected finding jobs eligible for the wage subsidy.

Children’s Minister, Tim Loughton, said:

Today’s announcement is a significant step in offering up to 55,000 struggling 16- and 17-year-olds real practical support to make the most of staying in education sustainably or getting into jobs and training.

The youth contract programme is bringing together real experts with experience and a track record of supporting young people to move on to the next stage of their lives.

Organisations will receive an initial payment for taking young people on, but will only receive subsequent payments when they show progress, such as getting young people to engage with training programmes or undertake apprenticeships. The contracts on offer are worth up to £2,200 for every young person helped, with the full amount payable only if a young person is still in full-time education, training or work with training six months after re-engaging.

Today, the government is announcing the names of the charities and businesses, with expertise in supporting young people, who have successfully bid to participate. The organisations were required to demonstrate a proven track record in getting young people into education, apprenticeships, training or work with training. Local authorities will work with successful providers to target those young people in their area who will benefit most, fitting this programme with other provision on offer locally.

Providers are required to tailor their support to suit individuals’ needs. Participants will get a wide range of support and take part in projects, for example:

  • Being supported to apply for education and training courses and jobs, such as through practice interviews and application-writing
  • Participation in projects focusing on a range of activities, such as skills training and improving literacy and numeracy.
  • Intensive mentoring and personal support on areas such as personal finance, health and wellbeing.
  • In the north east, provider Pertemps People Development Group will provide a one-stop shop for integrated youth services with varying levels of support to help young people. This will include, for example, wake-up calls to help young people develop a routine, and bite-sized English and maths courses.
  • In Yorkshire, provider Prospects will offer highly personalised programmes to help young people build their motivation and confidence, including intensive mentoring and personal support, for example through using a Heroes to Inspire scheme in which ex-service personnel deliver motivational sessions.

The programme, to take place over the next 3 years, will focus on at least 55,000 16- to 17-year-old NEETs with no GCSEs at A* to C, who are at the highest risk of long-term disengagement. It is intended to improve their experience and qualifications, to give them a better chance of finding work and so reduce the proportion who become unemployed in adult life.

Evidence shows that unemployment early in life can leave a permanent scar on earning potential, with the effects on careers still evident decades later. By the age of 42, someone who had frequent periods of unemployment in their teens is likely to earn 12 to 15% less than their peers.

Notes to editors

1) The funding applies to England only. Three areas - Liverpool, Leeds-Bradford-Wakefield and Newcastle-Gateshead - will be able to allocate their own pot of money as part of the government City Deal agenda, aimed at giving more autonomy to England’s core cities.

2) The cost of being NEET between the ages of 16 to 18 is estimated to be around £56,000 in public finance costs and £104,000 in resource costs (lost labour market potential), over the working lifetime of each person who has been NEET at this age.
Evidence suggests there are a number of wider benefits to learning, which include:

  • Physical and mental health: those educated to level 2 or below are 75% more likely to be smoking at age 30 compared to a similar individual educated to degree level or higher. Increasing the qualification level of women without qualifications to level 2 could reduce their risk of depression at age 42 by 15%.
  • Teenage motherhood: 47% of young women who did not obtain any GCSEs in year 11 had a child by 19, compared to 3% of those achieving 5 or more GCSEs A* to C.

3) The scheme is part of the youth contract, which will support 16- to 24-year-olds with £1 billion funding over the next three years. It aims to lift young people out of unemployment. It is being jointly delivered by the Departments for Education, Business Innovation and Skills, and Work and Pensions.

Key features include:

  • Cash payments to encourage employers to recruit young people.
  • An extra 250,000 work experience places over the next three years.
  • At least 20,000 extra incentive payments worth £1,500 each for employers to take on young people as apprentices.
  • Extra support through Jobcentre Plus in the form of weekly, rather than fortnightly, signing-on meetings, more time to talk to an adviser and a National Careers Service interview.

4) Regional breakdown of 16- to 17-year-olds NEET (end 2011):

Region Estimated number of NEETs Percentage of 16- and 17-year-olds who are NEET
South east 8,740 4.8
London 5,660 3.6
East of England 6,590 4.9
South west 5,390 4.7
West midlands 6,460 5.0
East midlands 4,800 4.5
Yorks and Humber 7,110 6.1
North west 9,810 5.8
North east 4,340 6.9

5) The following will deliver the scheme. Further information on the kinds of activities and services they will offer can be found below.

Manchester and Cheshire

Provider: Groundwork

Supply chain: Groundwork Bury & Bolton; Groundwork Oldham & Rochdale; Groundwork Manchester, Salford, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford; Groundwork Cheshire; Groundwork Lancashire West & Wigan; Barnardo’s; Brathay Trust; Rathbone; The Prince’s Trust; YMCA Training

East midlands

Provider: Groundwork

Supply chain: Groundwork Derby & Derbyshire; Groundwork Leicester & Leicestershire; Groundwork Greater Nottingham; Groundwork Creswell, Ashfield & Mansfield; Groundwork Northamptonshire; Barnardo’s; Catch 22; YMCA Training; Riverside Housing

Merseyside, Lancashire and Cumbria

Provider: Groundwork

Supply chain: Groundwork Lancashire West & Wigan; Groundwork Pennine Lancashire; Barnardo’s; Brathay Trust; Riverside Housing; The Children’s Society; The Prince’s Trust; Tomorrow’s People; Young Cumbria

East of England

Provider: The Consultancy Home Counties Ltd

Supply chain: TCHC Limited; ACER; The Learning Partnership (incorporating Central Bedfordshire College, Bedford College); Central Bedfordshire Council and Bedford Borough Council; The College of West Anglia; EYS Limited; Peterborough Regional College; Young Suffolk; The Papworth Trust; The Lightbulb; DB Training; Ixion Holdings; New Career Skills; YMCA Training; Norfolk Training Services; All Trades Training Limited; City College (Norwich); Lowestoft College; Ipswich CSV Media Clubhouse; West Suffolk College; ITS Training; Otley College

North east

Provider: Pertemps People Development Group Ltd

Supply chain: Morrison Trust; Avanta; Groundwork; Igen; Inspire 2 Independence; The Prince’s Trust; Stockton Riverside College; The Salvation Army; Sunderland City College

South east (A)

Preferred bidder: Skills Training UK

Supply chain: Pinnacle People; Avanta; Shaw Trust; TBG; Tomorrow’s People Trust; Catch 22; YMCA; Future Creative; East Kent ITeC; DV8; NCDA; NXG Group; Beacon Church; Treejumpers; My Bnk

South east (B)

Preferred bidder: Skills Training UK

Supply chain: West Berks Training Consortium; Wheatsheaf Trust; Catch 22; Milton Keynes College; Portsmouth CC (PCMI); Shaw Trust; Reading Borough Council; YMCA; Ixion Holdings; Southampton CC; Isle of Wight CC; My Bnk

South west

Provider: Prospects Training Services (Gloucester) Ltd

Prospects Training Services (Gloucester) Ltd is the primary deliverer of the programme, and does not have a formal sub-contract arrangement in place but will be delivering the youth contract working alongside a range of partners, such as local sports clubs, children and family centres and youth support services

West midlands

Provider: Prospects Limited

Supply chain: BEST; CSWP Limited; Herefordshire County Council; Shropshire County Council Training; Staffordshire County Council; Stoke-on-Trent City Council; Telford and Wrekin Council; Groundwork West Midlands; NACRO; South Birmingham College; Sova; TBG Learning; Walsall College; Youth Offending Team; Derbyshire College; Groundwork; Worcestershire County Council; Accent on Training; Age UK; Barnardo’s; Base 25; Bournville College; BTCV; Midland Mencap; Nova; Rathbone; Shaw Trust; Steps to Work Challenge Building; Trinity Training Services; Walsall Council; Zip Theatre; EXG; New College Telford; Catch 22; Educ8 Leicestershire Limited; Ecell3; EYES; Family Action; Gloucester Street Community Centre; Gordon Franks Training; MIND: Phoenix Training Services Limited; Re Entry; Solihull College; Sunbeam Community Enterprises; Vine Trust; City of Wolverhampton College; Burton and South; First for Skills; Watford and North Shropshire College; Castle Vale Regeneration Services

Yorkshire and the Humber

Provider: Prospects Limited

Supply chain: Barnsley MBC; YMCA; Hull City Council; Barnardo’s; Calderdale & Kirklees Careers; North East Lincolnshire Council; Grimsby IFHE; Babcock Enterprise; Sheffield Council; Age UK; BTCV; Business Support Development; Calderdale College; Cat Zero; Dearne Valley College; Doncaster College; East Riding College; Family Action; Groundwork; Hull College Group (HCUK); Llite; NACRO; Project Challenge; Sheffield Futures; Stanford Lynn; The Source Academy; The Serenity Academy; Woodspeen; Your Consortium

London north

Provider: Prevista

Supply chain: Examplas Limited; Ixion; Lifeline; Fit for Sport Limited; Newham College of Further Education; NACRO; The Twist Partnership Limited; Urban Futures London Limited; Catalyst Gateway; MyWork Search;Youth Applied Positive Psychology

London south

Provider: Prevista

Supply chain: TWIST; Ixion; Lifeline; Fit for Sport; Business and Education London South; NACRO; MyWork Search;Youth Applied Positive Psychology.

6) The providers will offer a wide range of services and provision, including:

Pertemps People Development Group (North East)

PPDG will offer a service called Nu Trax, to provide a ‘one stop shop’ for integrated youth services to address barriers to education, employment & training. Varying levels of support to suit the young person include:

  • Wake-up calls: a PPDG trained coach to help young people develop a routine. This will include daily calls, flexible start times and a driver pick-up scheme.
  • Bite-sized units i.e. English and maths courses to re-introduce learning and provide a stepping stone to full qualification.
  • Out of hours support: ‘Something to do’ at weekends and evenings (i.e. salsa, football matches and DJ classes).
  • Pick & mix prevention workshops and one-to-one help to address issues preventing engagement i.e. drugs and alcohol.
  • Employment: links to 10,000+ employers in the north east will equip young people for local jobs.

Prospects (West midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber)

Will support young people with a highly personalised programme of work to help them overcome practical and psychological barriers and build motivation, confidence and resilience. Support will include intensive mentoring and personal support from engagement through to six months sustainability in employment, education or training. Specific schemes include:

  • Heroes to Inspire using ex-service personnel to deliver motivational sessions with groups of young people.
  • Short sector specific work experience and training that young people really value. A network of specialist providers will offer work experience, tasters and short sector specific qualifications needed to enter employment.

Groundwork (Manchester & Cheshire, East Midlands, Merseyside, Lancashire and Cumbria)

Will be working alongside other major voluntary organisations including Barnardo’s, Prince’s Trust, YMCA Training and the Children’s Society recruiting ‘youth mentors’ to help young people get involved in community projects and volunteering, offering trials and tasters with colleges and employers and using sport, art and music to help young people realise they have something positive to contribute.

The Consultancy Home Counties Ltd (TCHC) (East of England)

TCHC and their partners will provide an intensive mentoring support service that will engage with young people, conduct initial assessments of their needs and prepare an action plan indicating what tailored support they need to help re-engage them back into education, employment or training. It is likely that the young person will have major barriers to sustaining engagement, so will need the ongoing support provided by their mentor who will stay with them throughout the programme.

Additional support offered will include:

  • advice on how to deal with practical barriers (e.g. debt, accommodation, benefits).
  • counselling to overcome psycho-social barriers (e.g. physical and mental health, sexual health, addiction, family planning, care and family welfare).
  • attitudinal and anger management support.
  • sustainable career choices including work tasters and work experience.

Prevista (London)

Support for young people will include:

  • Using state-of-the-art web-based tools that supply online training, CV building and job searchers, plus techniques to improve outlook, mindset, responsibility and character, helping young people to build strengths, self-motivation, self-control, and social skills.
  • Fit For Sport: pioneering training and employment opportunities for young people through Fit for Sport - specialists in the sport and active leisure sector. Combining work experience and tasters, Fit for Sport will be creating excellent opportunities for young people to make a difference to both their local communities and their own career prospects.
  • Urban Futures: Utilising well-established partnerships with Heathrow and Stansted airports Urban Futures will combine a range of techniques from CV writing to social awareness skills in order to create opportunities for young people to access a range of jobs in the aviation sector.

Skills Training UK (South East)

Skills Training UK and its local partnership network in communities across the south east regions will re-engage 16- to 17-year-olds who have left school without qualifications and not gone into any further education or employment. Each young person will have a personal mentor who will support them throughout their journey, helping develop and prepare them to re-enter training, education or employment with an Apprenticeship and supporting them with any personal issues or concerns they might face. Helping the young person to sustain their new beginning will be key and the personal mentor will stay involved throughout.

Prospects Training Services (Gloucester) Ltd (South west)

  • Prospect Training Services (Gloucester) Limited will be delivering innovative engagement strategies such as providing opportunities for fun, physical activity which fosters team building, attitudinal change and skills development ultimately leading to further education and employment opportunities.
  • Ex-premiership players will support their ‘Street Games’ activities acting as role models and motivators to the young people.
  • Community engagement programmes will be rolled out to strengthen relationships with the young people and their communities, building trust, establishing boundaries and developing mutual respect.
  • We will also utilise one of the UK’s leading teenage parenting programmes - Parent with Prospects - to provide support and guidance together with a nationally accredited qualification to those young parents and parents to be.

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Updates to this page

Published 20 July 2012