City employers have responded quickly to pledge their support to new City of Wolverhampton initiative ‘Wolves@Work’.
The three-year programme, co-ordinated by City of Wolverhampton Council, in partnership with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), was officially launched at Wolverhampton Racecourse on January 25.
Aimed at improving city employment rates, it has already seen 47 companies, such as National Express, Liberty House, Premier Inn, and JLR pledge their support in less than two months.
Employers have committed to Wolves@Work in different ways, with pledges ranging across work experience, apprenticeships, a commitment to recruit local people, and train workforce mentors.
More than 490 City of Wolverhampton residents have been enrolled as part of the programme, with 61 supported into work, 52 into the Sector Based Work Academy programme, and 12 into work experience.
City of Wolverhampton Council Leader, Councillor Roger Lawrence, said: “This is an important development originating from the Skills and Employment Commission I set up and I am delighted to see such strong support from the employers in our city.
“We are tackling unemployment levels and I want people to benefit from the jobs and growth being generated by the £3.7 billion of investment on site or in the pipeline in Wolverhampton.
“The council and DWP are therefore making a major investment into this programme to boost employment opportunities for 3,000 local people, including 1,000 youngsters.”
Work Services Group Director for DWP Central England, Pat Davies, added: “Wolves@Work is an exciting project that we’re hoping will help us in continuing to tackle youth unemployment in Wolverhampton.
“We have a real opportunity to ensure that local people are offered the best chance of sustainable employment, while also helping employers find the workers they need with the right skills.”
Thirty work coaches are being taken on to work with employers and help people into work, so that local people not only have a better chance of getting a job, but also go on to thrive within the workplace.
A pool of ‘City Work’ mentors will also support young people alongside the work coaches.
The ‘Wolverhampton Work Pledge Card’ sets out a commitment from employers to work experience for people out of work, apprenticeships, vacancies, business mentors and round-table discussions.
For employers requiring further information or to pledge support please contact City of Wolverhampton Skills & Employability Officer, Angela Hoyle, on 01902 550587.