New youth hub to provide career and training support

A new Youth Hub at the Library of Birmingham is offering advice and support to young people who are unemployed, at risk of losing their job or leaving education.

Those aged 16-29 can receive practical help in order to gain access to training and career opportunities. The Hub brings together partners to join up local employment and training services, so that young people can gain the support they need in one place.

It is one of eight Youth Hubs being set up in the region as part of the Youth Offer that the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) has developed with Jobcentre Plus, local authorities, the voluntary sector and local employers.

Daniel O’Brian, was supported by the new Birmingham Youth Hub. He said: “I was stressed out and felt like I was constantly coming up against a brick wall after two years of searching for a new job.

“But after just three sessions at the Youth Hub, I’ve obtained a KS role and a better understanding about what I’d like to aim for in the future – I honestly can never thank the staff at the Youth Hub enough for that.”

Mayor Andy Street, who is also chair of the WMCA, said: “Sadly we know that young people have been hardest hit as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, with many of the sectors they work in having been severely affected.

“So, we must do everything we can to help our young people get back into work as quickly as possible if they have lost their jobs, as well as helping those who are looking to take their first step into employment. Youth Hubs are a great example of how we are working with our partners to do exactly that.

Cllr Jayne Francis, cabinet member for education, skills and culture at Birmingham City Council, said: “The city council recently published a report called Breaking Down the Barriers, looking at how we must all deal with the challenges facing young people; they face economic hardship, mental health challenges and growing fears for the future, and many feel they don’t have the skills and knowledge needed to kickstart their careers.

“By working together, we can help to remove the barriers that are limiting our young people’s ambitions and prevent a left-behind generation from being created. This Youth Hub is an example of the type of support we are providing to help young people access training and opportunities for careers development.”