Virgin Trains & Centro give young jobseekers employment boost

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Unemployed young people from the West Midlands will be offered apprenticeships with Virgin Trains and Centro after completing a Prince’s Trust course to help them move into employment.

The Prince’s Trust teamed up with Centro and Virgin Trains to provide 12 work placements as part of the youth charity’s Get Into Transport programme and have announced apprenticeships will be made available at the end of the scheme.

The news comes after the 18 to 25-year-olds spent time on the four-week initiative gaining valuable experience in public transport.

Kathy Williams, West Midlands regional director for The Prince’s Trust, said: “The Prince’s Trust Get into Transport course provides a great opportunity for young people to gain valuable work experience to help them find a job. More than three in four young people helped by The Prince’s Trust move into work, training or education.

“We have developed a valuable partnership with Centro. After the success of last year’s programme we are delighted to also have Virgin Trains on board to help young people move into work.”

As part of the flagship scheme, the group each spent three weeks working in various departments at Centro and a week with Virgin Trains. They were also given support with job searching, interview and application skills.

Chris Gibb, Chief Operating Officer at Virgin Trains, said: “I am very pleased that Virgin Trains has been involved in this initiative. Last year Centro impressed me with work they were doing with the Prince’s Trust and we decided to get involved ourselves this year. I am delighted these young people will have an opportunity to learn about customer service from our excellent team at Wolverhampton.”

Last year Centro, the West Midlands Integrated Transport Authority, ran the first successful programme with The Prince’s Trust, which resulted in one apprenticeship and four other young people gaining temporary employment.

Centro Chief Executive Geoff Inskip said: “The Get Into Transport scheme is a fabulous initiative giving young people a real chance to gain experience working in public transport. The four week programme is designed to give all of those who are participating valuable experience and the opportunity to gain and develop skills, and identify their strengths.

“This is the second year of Centro’s involvement with the Prince’s Trust and we are delighted that this year Virgin Trains have joined with us in offering a further apprenticeship place.”

The successful participants will be unveiled at a presentation event on Friday 11 March.

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