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Posted on 6 November 2023

Burnley Partnership gains Government involvement to youth employment changes in the town

A Burnley partnership, led by Calico Enterprise has been showcasing its work to improve employment opportunities in Burnley for younger people at a conference in London as a model of best practice.

The Connected Futures programme is Youth Futures Foundations flagship fund to support young people into jobs. The Burnley partnership includes the support of Participation Works and University of Central Lancashire in which insight has been carried out to discover what impacts young people getting employment within the Town.

At the Connected Futures Conference in London, the Burnley partnership shared insight with Lucy Frazer, MP for South-East Cambridgeshire and Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and policy advisors in the Department for Education and Department for Works and Pensions.

Insight included the mismatch between aspirations of people and employment opportunities in the area. There was also analysis into employer engagement, the educational system and preparation for young people in employment.

Consultations have been carried out with over 800 young people in Burnley in which the partnership intends to take the local data and influence systemic changes to the youth employment eco-system in Burnley.

The Burnley partnership will be collaborating with local partners and stakeholders over the coming months to determine what those changes will be.

Sam Howarth, Head of Social Impact at The Calico Group: ‘It was great to present our insight and findings to policy advisors and members of parliament.

We know from the data we have taken from a local level that there are barriers to employment for young people in the area and were excited for the next coming months to see how the project develops and improves the lives and aspirations of young people in Burnley.”

Lynne Blackburn, Director & Project Manager at Participation Works NW said: “The Connected Futures conference in London was a great opportunity for all the partners to share learning and for young people to have a voice and be involved in the project.

We are excited to see how the next phase of the project develops and to work with partners in the Town to make a difference for young people.”

Dr John Lockhart, Senior Lecturer, School of Health, Social Work at Sport at University of Central Lancashire said: “One of the strengths of the programme is sharing the experience of the different partnerships around the country, especially in learning the insights from young people who have been participants and co-producers.”

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