Young people

Firms flock to apprentice event

An art gallery, a gardening company and a firm of accountants were among the businesses flocking to an event aimed at improving young people’s career opportunities.

The event attracted around 50 firms looking to hire young people, provide trial placements or offer work experience. It was organised by Surrey County Council as part of its drive to boost the job prospects of 500 teenagers by next April.

Surrey leader David Hodge was joined by speakers from the Federation of Small Businesses, Digital Business Britain and the council’s youth service at Canon’s UK headquarters in Reigate.

Former Prisons Minister Crispin Blunt praised Surrey for its efforts to get young people into work in a video message, which followed similar support from Justice Secretary Chris Grayling at the first event in Epsom last month.

Further events will be held at the Surrey Technology Centre in Guildford on 6 September and Foxhills Hotel and Resort in Ottershaw on 27 September. They will be followed by the Surrey Opportunities Fair on 8 October, which last year attracted 1,800 people last year.

In April it was revealed that apprenticeships were rocketing in Surrey – with a near 20% surge the previous year.

Mr Hodge said: “Apprenticeships are good for business and a successful career. Our aim is to give 500 young people the leg up they need to find work at a difficult time and provide employers with the skilled workforce they require to thrive.

“The response so far to our events from employers has been tremendous and we look forward to even more getting involved in reaping the benefits of apprentices so they can boost their profits and drive growth in the economy.”


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