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Runner up for ‘Pastoral Support Award’ in the Suffolk Adult Learners Awards 2021

This month, YES has been awarded runner up for the ‘Pastoral Support’ as part of the Suffolk Adult Learners Award 2021.

The East Suffolk Youth Employment Service was launched in November 2019, providing routes to employment, education and training for young people aged 16-24 in East Suffolk. Young people were able to ‘drop-in’ and meet with an experienced Work Coach who would provide 1-2-1 coaching and support, identifying appropriate pathways into employment, education, and training.

Just as we were ‘finding our stride’, the announcement that the UK would move into a period of ‘lockdown’ meant that we could no longer meet with young people face to face. Our principle method of engagement and support for young people was no longer available. Throughout April 2020, we rapidly adapted, accelerating our development, and adopting digital services to facilitate a bespoke package of support.

We wanted to make sure young people could easily reach us at their crisis point so, in June 2020, we launched our website. Usability was fundamental, so we designed a jobs board and online appointment booking to make it simple for young people to self-refer, day or night. This launch was a pivotal moment, and the website now makes up 40-50% of monthly referrals.

Throughout the pandemic, we have continued to build on our success and, as a result, have seen a 586% rise in outcomes. To-date, YES has supported over 700 local young people with everything from CVs to mock interviews. In the case of one young person, we have even hand-delivered an emergency white shirt, just in time for a job interview!. The last year has been tough on young people, but the team and I have quickly adapted to online delivery and been working to support people throughout the lockdowns.” – Ross, Job Coach

The most remarkable part of what we have achieved over the last year is that it has occurred in the shadow of a pandemic and one of the most trying times young people have ever experienced. Thanks to YES, we are incredibly proud to be able to say that hundreds of young people are now closer to work.

The story of one of our young people:

After graduating, I set off on a 5-month trip around Southeast Asia, however had to return home 2 months early due to Covid-19. It was always my plan to pursue my career when I returned, however this came slightly early for me and was at a time when more jobs were being lost than created. I was simply sending my CV to every job, and it got to the point where I wasn’t even tailoring my CV to the role. All I received was rejection e-mails.

I worked with Adam from YES and he was great. I feel like Adam believed in me and he wanted to see me succeed!

We started out by looking at my goals and really delving into the specifics of how I wanted my career to look. From this we realised my CV wasn’t creative enough for the industry and how important it was for me to have a bold creative CV. Adam also introduced me to many of his marketing contacts who helped me edit my CV to sound more professional and provide me with interview tips. All of which helped me land my new job.” – Marketing Assistant and Former YES Student