Leading businesses will provide pioneering access to training and employment for children leaving care, a government paper has revealed.
The move comes after businesses were warned earlier this year by the Green Paper, Raising Expectations, that they may face fines if they do not allow employees aged 16 and 17 to undertake accredited training by 2013.
Mary Richardson, chief executive of the HSBC’s Global Education Trust, told Personnel Today: “Our Management Academy Programme is a guaranteed level of management entry.
“We will provide special access for children leaving care at 16 – they need a special bridge to a management programme.”
The HSBC trust also offered £1m to pilot individual tuition schemes for children in care from this September, to prepare them for the job market.
BT pledged to reserve 30 of its 450 apprenticeship programme places for applicants from families with no record of employment, while Citi and Sky will also “explore partnership opportunities for work with children in care”, the White Paper said.
Over the past three years, Sky has offered children aged 11-16 from 500 schools the chance to take part in sporting activities to develop leadership, team work and communication skills.
Paul Briggs, a teacher for children in care at the Sheffield Children and Young People’s Directorate, backed the initiative: “The young people experienced a number of sports activities through the process, and many developed supportive and mentoring skills.”