Dorset Council is calling for the local community, organisations and businesses to back care-experienced young adults as they transition to adulthood.
Care leavers often face the challenges of pursuing education or employment while developing life skills, without the family and friend networks that do so much to support other young people.
Hall & Woodhouse has been a tremendous resource for Dorset’s care leavers, providing employment opportunities for young people who may have faced challenges entering the workforce due to their backgrounds or low self-confidence. The local firm organised information days and activities, including a cooking skills workshop, at their head office and brewery site in Blandford, leading to some care leavers securing jobs with Hall & Woodhouse across Dorset.
Anthony Woodhouse, Chairman for Hall & Woodhouse, expressed his delight at being part of the Dorset Council Care Leavers programme and the opportunity it presented to support young talent in hospitality.
Last year, Sky launched Sky Up, a programme created to tackle digital inequality, providing vital skills training through a dedicated £10 million fund.
As part of Sky Up, the Tech Grants initiative helps young people leaving the care system by providing them with devices, connectivity and training.
Working with Spectra and Dorset Council, 50 local young people received a technology bundle including laptop, rucksack, & digital active pen, and 18-months internet connection. The Dorset care leavers were also invited to a wellbeing event held at Bournemouth Football club, with a stadium tour and workshop teaching new ways to manage stress and anxiety.
The young people also attended a celebration event at Sky’s head office – the day included a campus and Sky Studios tour and talks from Simon Thomas (Soccer Sunday host) and inspirational care-leaver, Ashley John-Baptiste. They took part in workshops and attended a session on future possible career opportunities at Sky and the media industry.
Cllr Byron Quayle, Dorset Council’s Portfolio holder for Children, Education, Skills and Early Help said; ‘We want our care-experienced children and young people to thrive, develop their full potential and enjoy a settled adulthood.
‘We are grateful for the opportunities and support that Hall & Woodhouse and Sky offer to our young people – they are making such a difference.
‘We’d like to encourage more local businesses and organisations to consider how they could be part of Dorset’s initiative. If you’re willing to help, please do get in touch.’
To find out more or to offer support and opportunities, please contact Lucy.Benham@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk