Simon Boothroyd from Carlisle is encouraging local employers to offer young people more fulfilling work placements that help them gain practical skills for the future.
His story will be shown on ITV News Lookaround on Thursday 8th May 2014.
The 16-year-old is concerned that many work experience programmes often involve running office errands, which prevents people from learning on the job and giving companies the opportunity to spot new talent.
‘I want to be a vet when I’m older but you need to have done quite a bit of voluntary work at a range of places,’ explains Simon.
‘In secondary schools it’s often compulsory to go for at least a week, but some people I know spent their time making teas and coffees or laminating things for primary schools.
‘We feel that young people should know where they can get good work experience, which would actually benefit them.’
With the help of Fixers, Simon and his team have created a ‘Youth Approved Work Experience’ sticker which will be awarded to companies if a young person finds their experience with them to be a positive one (view below).
In the broadcast piece, Simon grants a local veterinary practice where he volunteered the seal of approval.
Nicky Jackson from Inspira supports the campaign and appears in the TV story. She discusses the importance of gaining useful skills and insights through placements.
‘When a company’s offering work experience to a young person, they need to be mindful that it will take some investment from a member of staff,’ she says.
‘They don’t want to be in a position where they’re being given a photocopier for five days, but they see the variety of work on offer.’
Simon adds: ‘It’s good for employers to give work experience - it puts their name on the map.
‘You might think, “oh actually I’ll go back there because I really liked it and I’d quite like to work there again”.'
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See how Fixer Karoline Beigley is showing the value
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