In a first for the North West, Sefton Council was delighted to launch the Caring Business Charter today alongside local businesses, partners and care experienced young people – with 48 potential employers already signed up.
The Charter aims to improve visibility and access for care experienced young people to employment, training, apprenticeship, work experience and mentoring opportunities. Local businesses and employers have committed to offering these opportunities and support, and to guarantee job interviews where candidates are suitably qualified for a vacancy.
At the launch event today, young people had the chance to meet some of the local businesses already signed up to the Caring Business Charter and discuss what opportunities these businesses could offer them in future.
The list of signatories to date stands at some 48 organisations from the public and private sectors, covering a range of industries from construction and project management to hospitality and healthcare.
Cllr Marion Atkinson, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills said:
“I have been blown away by the enthusiasm from our local business community in supporting and enhancing our offer for our care experienced young people.
“Not only does this provide an amazing opportunity for our young people but I am sure businesses will feel the benefit of working alongside some fantastic young people with bags of potential.
“Statistics show that young people with experience of the care system can be disadvantaged in the jobs market. However, we are determined to use our local connections and influence to buck the trend here in Sefton and give our young people all the tools they need to be a success in whatever they choose to do.
“This launch is just the start, we hope to have many more local businesses signed up by the end of the year!”
Cllr. Mhairi Doyle, M.B.E., Cabinet Member for Children’s Social Care said:
“The launch of our Caring Business Charter is a North West first and is just the beginning of our drive and duty to support our young people into adulthood and help them to gain experience in whatever industry they choose to make their own.
“I have been so thrilled to see our young people chatting with businesses and showcasing their own huge potential. I know that our local business community will learn just as much from our young people as they will from businesses.
“I am so excited to follow the journeys of our young people as they make great connections with our local community and maybe find an opportunity that kickstarts their future.”
Mark Davies, Architect Director from K2 Architects said:
“Over the last 12 months K2 Architects have worked closely with Sefton Council on how to repurpose The Strand Shopping Centre and align this with the Council’s vision for people first, connected, resilient and green, reaching net-zero carbon for 2030. We have built strong interpersonal relationships with our partners at Sefton Council and wider stakeholders to gain a deeper understanding of their aims and objectives, increasing the chances of delivering successful outcomes.
“We respect the enormous passion and commitment that the Council has put into this process to drive real change to Bootle Town centre, and now the launching of the Caring Business Charter. When Sefton Council approached us to join this Charter, it was a very easy decision for us to back this great initiative, as there was an alignment of a shared values between us.
“This is about inclusivity, and as a caring business, we are committed to supporting the communities in which we live and work, ensuring opportunity is there for all and no one is left behind.”
The Make a Difference Care Experienced group said:
“When you have experience of the care system, it can feel like the odds are stacked against you but schemes like this open doors into industries that we might never have even considered.
“Meeting the businesses today at the launch event gave us so much confidence that people in Sefton want to make a difference and help people with our life experiences showcase our potential.”
Peter Foxcroft, Forth Homes said:
“Forth Homes are a Sefton based house building firm. We are a local employer and giving back to the communities we serve is a core part of our business.
“Over the years, we have been lucky to employ many talented young people in Sefton. Whether as trades apprentices in our supply chain or as technical and administrative roles in our head office.
“We know that Sefton is filled with lots of bright and capable young people who just need someone to give them a chance for a positive start in life. Which is why we are signing up to the Caring Business Charter.
“It’s brilliant that Sefton Council have come up with such a creative initiative to help young people get a positive start to their working life. And we are pleased and honoured to work with the Council in delivering the charter. We’d urge every local employer to get involved and will be working with companies in our supply chain to encourage them to sign up to the Charter.”
David Burns, Abode said:
“Abode are an award winning estate agency with officers across Merseyside. Our head office is based in Crosby Village and the majority of our staff come from the areas we serve.
“We’ve experienced the benefits that come from employing young people and helping them to become a successful part of our business. As an estate agency, having staff who know and understand the communities where we are selling homes is a massive benefit.
“We couldn’t be more pleased therefore to sign up to Sefton’s Caring Business Charter. The Charter not only gives us a chance to pay something back to local residents but also will help us develop the talent we need for our business to continue being successful in the future.
“We think it’s a great honour and are really grateful to Sefton Council for the opportunity to join the Charter. It’s a really forward thinking initiative and a genuine opportunity for us to support the Council’s role corporate parenting responsibilities.”
If your business is interested in signing up to our Caring Business Charter, please go to our website https://www.sefton.gov.uk/business/caring-business-charter/