A group of Plymouth students got to visit Plymouth City Council’s Chamber and learn about the city and role of the Councillors as part of city’s Skills Aid Plymouth scheme.
Skills Aid Plymouth (SAP) was launched last year to give some of Plymouth’s young people extra support. The students got to meet the Lord Mayor, Councillor Mike Fox and Councillor Sue McDonald, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Public Health at the Council Chambers as well as participating in tour of the City. This included visiting the Open Doors event at Mount Wise. This is run by Mi-space, a division of the Midas Group, and has provided tours for school to see the regeneration of the historic site a from a former naval headquarters into one of Plymouth’s most desirable places to live.
SAP is a joint project between Plymouth City Council and Plymouth’s Rotary Clubs, which have provided the majority of the volunteer mentors working on the scheme. It is designed to help pupils understand and gain important employability skills which will improve their chances in an increasingly competitive job market and broaden their career options. Each young person has been assigned a personal mentor who has accompanied them on the series of twelve business led visits hosted by local organisations.
The SAP scheme currently involves three city-schools including All Saints Church of England Academy Plymouth, Marine Academy Plymouth and Sir John Hunt Community Sports College. Young people likely to benefit most from the scheme had their names put forward by their schools.
Councillor Sue McDonald, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Public Health said: “Skills Aid Plymouth aims to target young people in need of a little extra guidance and support to ensure they stay on the right track and achieve in life. It’s a real cooperative venture involving key partners – the three schools involved, Plymouth’s Rotary Clubs and local thriving businesses.”
Elaine Budd, the 1000 Club coordinator says “Projects like Skills Aid Plymouth are so important in the development our cities young people to gain valuable employability skills. I’m delighted to be able to support this initiative which is rich in learning opportunities that will greatly benefit our next generation of employees”
To kick off the SAP scheme, the first group of 12 and 13 year olds met with their new mentors at a launch event in March at Plymouth Argyle. This was followed by a visit to Centrica in April, the National Marine Aquarium in May, Babcock International in June, Shelterbox in July, Theatre Royal Plymouth in September, Plymouth Community Homes in October,Dartmoor Zoo in November and a trip to Vospers in February.