Since April 2013, Youth Focus: North East has been a partner in the development of the Big Lottery’s Talent Match programme. Talent Match is an innovative programme aimed at supporting 18-24 year olds furthest from the labour market access employment. The Big Lottery Fund have placed young people at the heart of the programme stating 50% of decision making should be made by young people.
The programme is delivered in 21 hotspots around the country and is managed in the North East by the Wise Group. The support offered in our region is targeted towards:
- Young males
- Lone parents
- Young carers
- Young people with mental health issues
- Young people with disabilities
- Young people who are rurally isolated or from communities facing long-term unemployment
Talent Match North East will support an upward ceiling of 2,500 young people over five years, finishing 2018.
Youth Focus: North East has been commissioned to ensure young people are meaningfully involved in designing, delivering and evaluating Talent Match North East. From the outset, we have co-ordinated a young person’s steering group to inform and govern the programme alongside the programme board. A team of Young Champions acted as the face of the programme and helped promote opportunities to young people across the region. Finally, a group of Young Evaluators came together to review the experience of young people accessing support and suggest ways in which the programme could develop over the final two years to better support young people to find employment.
As the programme has grown and developed, so has the involvement of young people. The Champions and Young Person Steering Group have united as Talent Match Leaders to pursue activities which they believe will create a legacy and longer term impact for young people attempting to find employment.
We also support a team of Young Researchers who are engaging and gathering information from their peers about a range of topics linked to their search for sustainable employment.
Alongside these groups, Youth Focus: North East support Talent Match partners to develop and embed their own models of youth participation, ensuring the programme involves young people from a grass roots level. We provide bespoke support to each organisation using our experience to discuss, advise and facilitate opportunities to involve young people across their work.
For more details about Talent Match North East, please contact Alex Black on 0191 477 9966 or at [email protected].