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Young people must be at heart of recovery, says Ross MSP Maree Todd as she backs first Scottish Careers Week

By Alan Hendry

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Caithness, Sutherland and Ross MSP Maree Todd (front, left) visiting the Alness campus of North Highland College UHI earlier this year.
Caithness, Sutherland and Ross MSP Maree Todd (front, left) visiting the Alness campus of North Highland College UHI earlier this year.

Young people in the Highlands deserve support to ensure they are at the heart of the economic recovery after the pandemic, Maree Todd has said.

The MSP highlighted the opportunities made possible by the Young Person’s Guarantee, launched a year ago by the Scottish Government, as she marked the first Scottish Careers Week.

Ms Todd praised careers advice services, education providers and employers across her Caithness, Sutherland and Ross constituency.

Scottish Careers Week (November 15-19) has been showcasing the range of careers support available to people of all ages. The campaign has been developed by Skills Development Scotland (SDS) in partnership with the Young Person’s Guarantee and Developing the Young Workforce.

Ms Todd said: “Locally, we’re fortunate to have the excellent support of Citizens Advice offices and the likes of UHI and North Highland College, who are a great resource for information on training and educational opportunities.

“We also have some fantastic local employers throughout the Highlands who are passionate about developing and supporting their current and future workforce, whether that be through apprenticeship schemes or training and upskilling opportunities.”

The Young Person’s Guarantee seeks to ensure that every person aged between 16 and 24 has the opportunity, based on their circumstances and ambitions, to go to university or college, secure an apprenticeship, join a training or work experience programme, find a job or participate in a formal volunteering programme.

Since its launch in November 2020, the guarantee has created 18,000 opportunities for young people, including modern apprenticeships, graduate programmes and additional college places.

“As we emerge out of restrictions and into recovery, the Scottish Government is ensuring our young folk have the chance to succeed despite the economic hit of Covid-19," Ms Todd said.

“The Scottish Government is investing £70 million into the Young Person’s Guarantee Scheme to create 24,000 jobs and enhance opportunities, ensuring no young person gets left behind.

“If you’re an employer in the Highlands looking to build its workforce, I would urge you to take a look at the Employer Hub over on the Young Person’s Guarantee website to find details on how you can get involved in the scheme.

“Young people across the Highlands have felt the impact and setbacks of Covid-19. It’s now crucial that we support them and ensure they are at the heart of our economic recovery.”

Sharon McIntyre, head of careers information, advice and guidance operations at SDS, said: "Scottish Careers Week offers a great opportunity to learn more about how our careers service can support people throughout their working lives."

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