Birmingham Graduation event
A new group of young people in Birmingham have graduated from a unique employability programme run jointly by the CareTech and EY Foundations.

The partnership equips 16-19 year-olds from low-income backgrounds with the core employability skills and confidence to go on to further education or jobs in the care sector. Students are mentored by care sector workers with the support of EY Foundation specialists. The partnership is the first of its kind in the care sector. It provides intensive training alongside frontline work experience and expert mentoring in order to equip the students with the skills they need to flourish in their careers.

The care sector is in the grips of a chronic shortage of carers and is struggling to attract new talent. This programme was designed to change the narrative around careers in care by providing students with intensive employability training and quality paid work. Through this, they are equipped with invaluable sector-specific skills and experience first-hand the rewarding nature of care work.

Too many young people from low-income backgrounds don’t get the support they need to fulfil their potential. The programme seeks to rectify this by equipping students with the skills necessary to enter further education or full-time employment.

Students are assigned a mentor and the development programmes are tailored to their specific goals and existing skills. The programme benefits the mentors too, giving them the opportunity to develop their leadership and motivational abilities.

Nora, 17, a past graduate of the employability programme, commented:
“I wanted a new experience and to prove wrong the people who doubted me. I want to go to university to study social work. This has shown me that this is what I want to do.”

Jonathan Freeman, CareTech Foundation CEO, said:

“To see how these young people have changed over the course of this programme is testament to the hard work of the mentors from the CareTech and EY Foundations. Demand for care and carers is only going to increase in the future and this scheme shows how we can start to equip young people with the right experience and leadership skills to be the carers of the future. I want to pay tribute to the tireless ongoing work by the teams from CareTech and the EY Foundation team in Birmingham who have made the programme such a success so far.”