Marks and Spencer is to run a work experience scheme for 600 homeless people
as part of a drive to get people off the streets and into work.
The retailer will offer each homeless person a two-week work placement at
Freda Pinner, community involvement manager from the M&S corporate
social responsibility team, said the company wants to give more than just cash
donations to charities. The scheme will cost £280,000.
Pinner said: "We see this as a great opportunity to help disadvantaged
young people looking to get into the workplace."
A successful pilot scheme at M&S last year saw eight homeless people
placed in stores. The scheme aims to increase confidence and build workplace
skills among homeless people and some of the candidates in the pilot were taken
on full time.
The move is part of the Ready for Work campaign run by the Business Action
on Homelessness group that comprises more than 90 UK firms and aims to get
people off the streets by giving them stable employment. The group has placed
250 homeless people, with 40 of them now in full-time jobs.