ThinkForward submits evidence to the Department for Works & Pensions

ThinkForward Ambassador, Kiianu Glasgow submitted evidence to a round table of MPs from the DWP select committee on employment opportunities for young people. Kiianu answered all the MPs questions clearly and concisely, giving a fuller picture of what it is like to be a young person looking for work.

Also in attendance in the public gallery was ThinkForward apprentice Amy Coulson. Amy wrote up her visit to the House of Commons below:

Hearing Kiianu speak made me feel so happy to be part of an amazing charity who want to help young people like us. Having her represent our work was a fantastic idea, she was great!

It was my first experience going to parliament and hearing someone speak about ThinkForward. As we entered the building it was like being at the airport with people’s bags being checked and searched. I felt so nervous but I couldn’t explain why. It  was just a situation you do not expect. The building inside is so unique with the designs and especially all the paintings.

All the MPs who asked questions seemed very intrigued by what ThinkForward does and I hope next time they make a decision that affects young people, they think about what Kiianu said, “young people don’t just want a job, they want a career.”

Overall the experience was incredible and I would love to attend another in the future.

ThinkForward Launches in Nottingham North

After five years developing the programme in north-east London, we are pleased to announce that we are launching ThinkForward in Nottingham.  With support from the Careers and Enterprise Company and in partnership with local charity Rebalancing the Outer Estates Foundation, we will be supporting 200 of the most disengaged young people across four schools to make a successful transition from school to work.

ThinkForward’s Coaches will provide long-term personalised support, helping young people to overcome challenges in and out of school and to build employability skills and confidence.  We will be engaging local employers, such as Nottingham City Homes and Boots, to provide work readiness activities such as skills workshops, business mentoring and work experience placements, as well as access to apprenticeships and other jobs.

We rely on the generosity of our supporters to make the programme a success.  If you have any business links in Nottingham please do get in touch.

Transforming the lives of young people in Nottingham North

The charities ThinkForward and Rebalancing the Outer Estates Foundation are partnering to provide a breakthrough Progression Coaching programme in four schools. Centred in Basford Hall, New College Nottingham, the programme will support young people most at risk of unemployment to ensure they successfully transition from school to higher education or sustained work.

Led by Graham Allen MP, Rebalancing the Outer Estates Foundation aims to break the intergenerational nature of Nottingham North’s outer estate deprivation, addressing route causes rather than just the symptoms. Together with ThinkForward they will work in schools to provide five years of one-to-one support to  young people identified as being most risk of becoming NEET (not in education, employment or training). ThinkForward’s Coaches will provide long-term personalised support, helping young people to overcome challenges in and out of school and to build employability skills and confidence.

ThinkForward currently works with over 1100 young people across 14 schools in east London and has achieved impressive results. 91% of young people graduating from the programme are in further education, employment or training and 72% have achieved 5 A*-C GSCE’s. Building on this success their move to Nottingham is the first step in their national expansion.

Why Nottingham North?

Nottingham North has some of the UK’s highest levels of inter-generational unemployment, low educational attainment and social deprivation. Despite Nottingham being a hub for local and national businesses many young people from Nottingham North are not progressing into sustained jobs and 1 in 3 live in a workless households.

The ThinkForward programme will address this by supporting 200 young people at Bluecoat Beechdale Academy, Bulwell Academy, Ellis Guilford School and Nottingham University Samworth Academy. Partnering with local employers including Nottingham City Homes and Boots, young people will benefit from targeted ready for work activities including, business mentoring, work experience placements and entry level jobs.

Partnership opportunities

The programme’s success depends on partnerships between schools, existing support providers and local employers. ThinkForward is seeking cornerstone funding to match funds raised from The Careers and Enterprise Company, Rebalancing the Outer Estates Foundation and schools to run the programme for the next five years. Local Business Champions are also being sought to provide skills based volunteering.

I am excited about working with ThinkForward, so that together our students most at risk of future unemployment are able to benefit from support with transitioning from school to employment or training.” Paul Halcro, Principal, The Bulwell Academy

To find out more about partnering with ThinkForward and to get involved in the launch contact Hannah Sharp – 

If you are interested in joining the ThinkForward team in Nottingham you can find more details about the job roles here.