Thameslink, in partnership with The Prince’s Trust, runs Get into Railways, a programme helping young people who are struggling to find work. 2019 marked the 5th anniversary of this special partnership which has helped over 180 young people into employment or further education and training.
Futures at Stake 2020 report
We join the Prince's Trust as the sponsor of a new research report, The Futures at Stake 2020, showing that a 'skills crisis is looming' if employers don't work to close the skills gap in numerous industries. The report shows that 73% of employers believe recruitment of young people is necessary to avoid this, while 59% said they struggle to recruit people with the skills they need. The report also surveyed more than 500 teachers, 70% of which warned that young people are leaving school without the basic skills they need for life and work.
The Get into Railways programme has so far helped 182 18-25 years olds gain skills and work experience, and has generated £1.6 million of social benefit to UK society over the last five years. With 164 of these young people completing the course since the start of the partnership in 2014, 77% have secured sustainable, permanent jobs in the GTR network which covers Thameslink, Great Northern, Southern and Gatwick Express.
The 18-25 year olds selected for the programme receive free four-week and two-day courses at a training centre on our network. Their time is split between the training centre and a two-week work placement at one of our stations.
The programme focuses on practical skills development and the chance to build a strong CV. The Prince's Trust helps young people become work- ready by developing their skills and confidence. Participants also get to experience a number of mock interviews with our staff.
The Social Impact Report marking the fifth anniversary can be downloaded here.
The report also announces that the programme, which takes an innovative and inclusive approach to training and employment, is set to be extended for two further years with a commitment to training at least 70 more young people.
For more information about the work that the Prince's Trust does please visit the Prince's Trust website.
Otis Mitchell, 26, is a father of three from Luton.
Several years ago, a back injury made him reconsider his career options and led him to follow his childhood dream - working on the railway.
He said of the programme: “I sent in my CV and things moved very quickly. I was invited for an interview the following day, and then there was a taster day. I was a bit nervous at first, but it was a good experience and I learnt about CV building, first aid, conflict management and all about Govia Thameslink Railway. For the two-week placement, I was based at Finsbury Park and King’s Cross stations. I really enjoyed it, especially meeting new people and being out of my comfort zone.”