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News1 March 2023

Mims Davies MP meets young people supported into work through Kickstart Scheme at the Houses of Parliament

On Monday 27 February, a group of young people who took part in the Kickstart Scheme headed over to the Houses of Parliament for a special visit hosted by Mims Davies MP, Minister for Social Mobility, Youth and Progression.

The young people secured paid six-month placements through the Scheme as part of the Kickstart Housing Partnership led by Clarion Housing Group, the country’s largest social landlord. The event offered the young people, who have since secured permanent employment, a chance to not only see inside the world-famous buildings in the heart of Westminster, but to share their experiences of participating in the government-funded programme launched in 2020 to tackle youth unemployment caused by the pandemic.

Through the Kickstart Housing Partnership, 545 young people were supported into Kickstart placements in organisations nationwide. Of these, 130 were employed by Clarion directly in roles from marketing and customer services, to IT and Clarion Futures, the charitable foundation of Clarion Housing Group.

The wraparound employability support and training provided by Clarion Futures mentors helped each participant to develop future-proof skills and invaluable work experience, as well as helping them identify routes to progression and career development.

More than 60% of those who took part in the Scheme across the Partnership progressed into permanent roles, apprenticeships or further education, ensuring that Kickstart will have a positive and long-lasting legacy.

Led by Clarion Housing Group, the Kickstart Housing Partnership comprised 84 organisations from the public, private and voluntary sectors, with 58 from the housing sector including Southern Housing (formerly Optivo), Peabody and Unity Housing Association.

Mims Davies MP, Minister for Social Mobility, Youth and Progression, said:

“Kickstart helped thousands of young people progress and get on the career ladder. I am incredibly proud of the Scheme’s success and the individual achievements it paved the way for, and so it was a pleasure to host some of the young people supported into work by the Housing Partnership at Parliament to hear some of those inspiring stories.

“New routes to work are created when government and employers join up, as demonstrated by Clarion directly employing over 100 Kickstarters. This shining example shows how investing in our young people – boosting their skills and confidence – sets up individuals, as well as business, for lasting success.”

Clare Miller, Chief Executive of Clarion Housing Group, said:

“These Kickstarters are just a handful of the talented young people employed through the Scheme who have shown an incredible level of hard work, dedication and ambition throughout their placements and into their new careers. Watching their progression and seeing them seize opportunities and thrive has been inspiring and we are so proud of all they have achieved.

“At Clarion, we know that employment is key to empowering young people to build stable foundations for fulfilling lives, so we are proud to have led the Kickstart Housing Partnership. Working with our partners, we have helped more than 500 young people take their first step towards a rewarding career. This has been a great example of government and the housing sector working together to meet a common goal.”

Hemraj Kular, 24, joined Clarion’s marketing team through Kickstart and within a few months was managing the Instagram channel. Now a permanent member of the team, he is feeling confident about the future.

Hemraj said:

“The Kickstart Scheme has given me so many brilliant opportunities and opened many doors, while also making sure I received the support needed to successfully set me on my career path. The support from my team and mentors really built my confidence, developed my skills, and gave me some really valuable experiences, as well as allowing me to showcase my knowledge and talents. All this helped me take the next step and turn my placement into a permanent role.

“The visit to Parliament has been a fantastic opportunity to talk about my personal experiences and hear that of my fellow Kickstarters.”