BASE members win funding from Careers & Enterprise Company

The Careers and Enterprise Company, an employer-led and government-backed organisation that aims to increase employer engagement with young people, has announced that two-fifths of its £4.2 million annual fund will be targeted at programmes supporting children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), looked-after children and care leavers, and young people from gypsy, Roma and traveller backgrounds.

The remaining £2.5million fund will be targeted at schools and colleges in 35 disadvantaged areas across the country, and details will be announced later this year. The Careers and Enterprise Company has faced criticism from the Education Committee on its effectiveness and use of funding. They recently announced a strategic partnership with career development organisation Talentino. Talentino – who focus on young people with SEND and learning difficulties – will play a leading role in The Careers & Enterprise Company’s work on Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).

The Careers & Enterprise Company is currently working with more than a third of special schools through the Enterprise Adviser Network. They have also published the SEND Gatsby Toolkit, What Works? Transition Programmes for Young People with SEND and Fuelling Futures a guide for employers who wish to work with young people with SEND. The company’s commitment to supporting this group of young people was reflected in a joint statement with the Gatsby Foundation and Disability Rights UK in November last year, which addressed the interpretation of the Gatsby Benchmarks by professionals for young people with SEND.

Chief executive of the Careers and Enterprise Company, Claudia Harris, said, 

“We are thrilled that these projects are helping us to move in the right direction and ensure that all young people – no matter their background or needs – are being offered the support they so fundamentally need. The quality of careers guidance is rising across the country, and it’s particularly encouraging that this funding is targeting and having an impact on some of the most disadvantaged groups. As the world of work is changing all the time, it is vital that this investment enables young people to navigate the many routes into work, as well as be guided by the right mentors and role models.”


Winning projects

The awards go to the following projects which include some promoted by BASE members including Dynamic Training and Pure Innovations.

  • Clifton Learning Partnership, £73,554: Provides transition to work and employability skills development through outdoor learning to Roma young people.
  • CSW Group, £118,206: Supported work experience for young people with SEND with personal job coach support.
  • Darlington Borough Council, £39,111: Varied programme including careers fairs, pop-up events, and networking events supporting gypsy, Roma and traveller young people.
  • Dynamic Training UK, £128,590: A borough-wide joined up approach delivered in Ealing to support young people with SEND into work experience.
  • Endeavour, £88,679: Employability skills and raising aspirations for 200 Roma and young people with SEND in Sheffield.
  • Evolve SI, £100,000: Working with looked after children and young people in the evenings, weekends and holidays to undertake leadership and social action projects.
  • I CAN, £64,598: Aims to target learners with communication difficulties through 'Talk about Talk Secondary' programme – a targeted intervention scheme that helps students aged 14 to 18 with poor communication skills to be ready for the workplace. The interventions help students to develop the skills they need to co-deliver a workshop about communication to an audience of local employers.
  • Inspira, £40,462: Bespoke mentoring programme for young people with high needs with individual guidance, transition planning and support and close liaison with family and other relevant services.
  • Leonard Cheshire Disability, £192,763: A “journey to work” programme which combines provides supported internships alongside a volunteering programme to boost life and work-related skills to young people with disabilities.
  • London Borough of Ealing, £53,054: Two x 12-week pathways programmes for young people aged 16 to 18 from Irish traveller and Roma communities.
  • National Deaf Children's Society, £78,961: Careers package for deaf young people alongside a training programme for local authorities to better support deaf young people.
  • North Somerset Council, £40,235: Raising aspirations, one to one and peer support for looked after children and care leavers in North Somerset.
  • Plymouth City Council, £61,461: Five-part programme which includes training staff, an employability Passport for SEND students in Years 9 to 11, a programme of work-related learning and experience in hospitality for young people with SEND, careers fairs for students and families and a programme of work experience in the construction industry for young people with SEND.
  • Pure Innovations, £65,390: Sessions designed for small groups of SEND young people which will involve preparing a portfolio of learning, meeting with stakeholders like agencies, employers to and previous SEND learners to share their experiences.
  • The White Room, £46,900: 10-day programme across two terms to provide SEND students with employment routes into the creative and digital industries workforce.
  • Adviza Partnership, £75,000: Providing career guidance to SEND students and looked after children and care leavers with one to one and group sessions.
  • Ahead Partnership, £105,912: Provides employability and transition skills for mainly SEND and autistic students. The programmes are tailored to meet the unique requirements of each young person.
  • Amaze, £117,263: Targeting young people with SEND aged 14 to 25 and their families to provide work-ready skills, to help to boost confidence and to increase awareness about employment, further education, training and volunteering which will then aim to increase the aspirations of the young people. The programme includes social interactions, information, advice and guidance support and training courses.
  • Derbyshire Virtual School, £153,100: 60-week creative mentoring and enterprise programme for 30 young people years 9 to 13 who are looked after children or care leavers at risk of ending up not in education, employment or training (NEET).
  • Hertfordshire County Council, £67,760: 20-month programme aimed at young people in years 8 to 11 from the traveller community to provide professional information, advice and guidance, work experience placement with one to one mentoring and further support, which is expected to last between six and 12 months.