Apprentices at one of the UK's biggest theme parks have discovered that they've been given permanent jobs as part of a national scheme to tackle youth unemployment.
Alton Towers Resort welcomed a group of unemployed and disadvantaged young people to the Resort earlier this month for an employment programme in association with the Princes Trust.
The participants spent 4 weeks behind the scenes at Alton Towers learning vital customer service skills, receiving health and safety training and getting career guidance, They also carried out work placements in Hotel Food and Beverage, Housekeeping, Front Office, Park Operations, Environmental Services, Food and Beverage and Retail.
This week, the trainees all discovered they'd got permanent positions and they say it's changed their lives.
22-year-old Connor Dent from Stafford, suffers with anxiety and depression and had spent over 2 years searching for employment with the job centre. He said: “I’m not very confident or have any confidence in my ability. Before coming on the course I felt like I couldn’t achieve anything and was useless to my friends and family. Coming on the course was a big deal for me.
It’s been a tough few weeks but I’ve stuck at it and I owe a lot to this course, it’s helped me come out of my social bubble and break down a lot of barriers. I am a lot more confident and I can see my problems starting to fade."
The scheme is helping to tackle the nationwide issue of youth unemployment. Earlier this month, new figures from the Office of National Statistics showed that the number of young people with jobs has dropped by 43,000 over the past year.
- 480,000 young people aged 16-24 were unemployed in February to April 2019.
- The number who are economically inactive (not in or looking for work) decreased by 10,000.
- The unemployment rate (the proportion of the economically active population who are unemployed) for 16-24 year olds was 12.2% in February to April 2019. This is down from 11.5% in the previous quarter and 11.8% a year before.
- Read the full report here
The programme at Alton Towers has reached a milestone of helping 100 young people gain employment, many of which are now employed at the UK’s biggest theme park in unique and fun roles.