Homeless charity Llamau is today leading a campaign, which aims to create awareness around the impact Covid-19 has had on already marginalised young people who are trying to take their first steps into employment.
The charity will be encouraging a host of individuals and organisations to join the #myfirstjob conversation across social media, sharing stories about their first job and how they believed it helped to shape them into who they are today.
The overarching aim of the campaign is to encourage employers to come forward and work with Llamau to support young people into work placements.
Why is this campaign so important?
The young people Llamau support are eager to learn, creative and resilient individuals. They have tenacious personalities and interesting stories to share, but they also face multiple barriers that other young people do not. Barriers that stand in the way of them being offered equal employment opportunities that could spark their passions in life and pave the way for a future they deserve.
The Coronavirus pandemic has severely dented the Welsh labour market as a whole but it has devastated industries such as hospitality and retail, where the young people we support usually begin their employment journey.
As a result, we are seeing more and more young people being pushed further away from the labour market without support in place to help them identify their next steps in life.
Head of Education, Employment and Training for Llamau, Mark Willmore said
“The young people Llamau support are already considered to be some of the people furthest away from sustainable employment, education and training. The pandemic has exacerbated this issue, having caused wide spread problems to industries such as hospitality and retail, where many young people take their first steps into employment.
“We understand it’s very difficult for employers right now but there has never been a more important time for businesses to come forward and show young people that there are work opportunities out there for them.”
The campaign also aims to highlight the benefits a young person can bring to a business and how offering work placements through Llamau can help employers get back on their feet.
“There is no expectation on the employer to offer the young person permanent employment after the initial 16-26 week placement has finished. The placement should offer a supportive working environment where a young person can learn skills they can carry forward in life and into future employment.
“Llamau also pays the young person’s wage, so there is no cost to the employer other than time and patience.”