Platform Project Offers Kickstart Opportunities
Four young people have joined The Platform Project in Swindon. They’ve done so as part of the government’s Kickstart programme. And there are four more vacancies available before the scheme finishes in December.

The Kickstart Scheme provides funded roles to create new jobs for 16-24 year olds on Universal Credit. It’s a way of reducing the risk of long-term unemployment. Each young person will work for 25 hours a week for six months in paid entry level roles which help them launch their careers.

Platform Project Offer Kickstart Opportunities  - Sophie Taylor, Cameron Packer, Sadie Sharp & Phoebe Jerman
Sophie Taylor, Cameron Packer, Sadie Sharp & Phoebe Jerman

The Platform Project has created a range of roles across the business, including:

  • Administration
  • IT
  • Marketing
  • Youth work
  • Videography

After several successful placements, the project is seeking more young up-starters.

Sadie Sharp, founder of The Platform Project said: ‘We’re thrilled to welcome these four young people as paid members of the staffing team. It’s so difficult in this current economic climate for young people to get a job without any work experience. But our rapid growth has meant that we’ve been able to create substantial roles to help them launch their careers. They have been invaluable in helping us develop the organisation.’

What the young people say

Nineteen year old, Cameron Packer, joined The Platform Project to fulfil an IT and systems administration assistant role. He hopes this will help him gain a better understanding of how IT systems and procedures work in an organisation. Cameron said: ‘I recently finished a complete website re-design for the project and gained some great experience to date.’

Sophie Taylor and Phoebe Jerman are both 22. Sophie is a graduate from the University of Kent and Phoebe went to Reading University.

Sophie’s role is as an online publishing assistant and she explained: ‘I got introduced to a great supportive team. They taught me how to use a whole variety of new programmes and equipment. I’ve also had introductions to website builders like IONOS and have been managing the #iDare youth magazine & blog website. I never thought I’d end up in a job that I would love so much and in such a short space of time too.’

Phoebe said, ‘having grown up in a family of teachers, she’d always contemplated becoming a teacher herself. But yet struggled to find entry level roles that would help her build relevant experience. So when the role of a Youth Work Assistant came up she jumped at the chance.

My advice to anyone thinking of engaging with The Platform Project as a Kickstarter is that they REALLY know how to develop young people and do everything they can to help you grow. So get stuck in and apply for any roles that come up – it’s a great place to work.’

The oldest new Kickstarter

The oldest member of the new Kickstarter team is 23-year-old Joshua Austrie. Josh has moved around a fair bit in his life. He’s had several different schools, finishing his formal education at Swindon College, now Swindon New College. He’s a recent recruit to the project. He said from the moment he stepped through the door, friendly faces greeted him.

‘In the first instance I applied to be a videographer. But Sadie also saw how learning social media and marketing would benefit me in my longer-term career goals. So I now combine both. I am usually quite reserved, but I already feel like I’m coming out of my shell and it’s been refreshing to break out a little.’

Moving on

Phoebe and Cameron have been with The Platform Project for almost six months and are about to move on into further education and employment. Their move leaves vacancies open for a new IT administrator and youth work assistant.

The Platform Project are also recruiting for two extra Kickstart roles. One is as a marketing assistant and another as an administration assistant.

A young person aged 16-24 claiming Universal Credit, may be eligible to apply for the Kickstart roles.

About the Platform Project

The Platform Project, now in its fourth year, is a social enterprise that helps prepare young people for the work environment and take their next steps into a career. 89% of the young people they work with move on into paid work, further education or self-employment within 6 months.

For more information, visit: www.platformproject.co.uk