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Thousands of Scottish youngsters benefit from skills for work and life

Thousands of Scottish youngsters benefit from skills for work and life

More than 8,000 young people take part in Barclays’ LifeSkills education programme

More than 8,000 school children from across Scotland have taken part in LifeSkills workshops with the support of the team from Business in the Community (BITC) Scotland and Barclays volunteers – with another 1,000 already booked.

LifeSkills created with Barclays, is a free, curriculum-linked programme for young people and schools which aims to engage, educate and empower young people giving them access to employability skills to support them in the transition from school to work.

Employability skills are essential to the long-term sustainability of the Scottish economy and the life chances of the next generation of young people.

To help address this skills gap and the need that employers have to recruit skilled young people, BITC Scotland is working with Barclays volunteers to support taking LifeSkills in classrooms across Scotland, providing interactive, workshops on topics designed to boost their work readiness, communication skills and financial literacy. Working with partners such as BITC Scotland, ensures that LifeSkills reaches those young people who need it most.

The programme focuses on three core modules; work skills, people skills and money skills.  Young people gain skills such as CV writing, interview skills, networking, problem solving, creativity, resilience, communication and managing online reputation.

Commenting on passing the 8,000 milestone, Kirstie Mackey, Head of LifeSkills at Barclays, said:

“As the world of work continues to evolve and become increasingly competitive, it is vital that we ensure all young people are offered the same chances to improve their employability and the opportunities to gain the core transferable skills that employers are looking for.  Government, businesses, educators and parents need to work together to improve careers advice and invest in the next generation, raising their confidence and aspirations and building a talent pipeline. We are extremely proud that our partnership with BITC Scotland is making a tangible difference for young people.”

Almost 850 young people from eight schools and three colleges in Glasgow have taken part in the LifeSkills programme to date.

Kenny MacPherson, Head teacher of Springburn Academy in Glasgow added:

“Springburn Academy is taking part in the Barclays LifeSkills programme to supplement our ‘World of Work’ week for pupils in S1 to S3.  This gives pupils an opportunity to research the world of work, different careers and opportunities that exist for them and to develop the confidence to discuss their skills, both in terms of strengths and areas for development.  LifeSkills offers our pupils an opportunity to learn about their skills holistically, and in relation to the curriculum they are following.  We hope that this programme will contribute to our pupils confidently talking about their skills and preparing them for the world of work”.

Director of Business in the Community Scotland Alan Thornburrow said

“The LifeSkills programme has been created to inspire millions of young people and equip them with the key skills to move forward into the 21st century workplace. The ethos behind the programme aligns perfectly with Business in the Community Scotland’s values and we’re thrilled to have helped deliver the programme to over 8,000 young people.

“LifeSkills supports the creation of a strong talent pipeline of young people moving into the labour market who can achieve their aspirations, which in turn addresses the significant societal issue of the skills gap and youth employment challenges faced by Scotland. By equipping the future workforce with these skills, companies like Barclays are making a positive difference to the lives of young Scottish people and our nation’s future economic prosperity.”