Stephen Timms MP for East Ham has called on local food and grocery businesses to sign up to an industry campaign to support young unemployed people in Newham.

Feeding Britain’s Future will see thousands of unemployed young people from across the country go into farms, factories and stores for free skills training and Stephen Timms wants businesses across East Ham to get involved so that hundreds of youngsters in the area can reap the benefits.

Following the success of Feeding Britain’s Future “Skills for Work Week” in 2012, the Institute of Grocer Distribution has launched the 2013 campaign in an effort to tackle local youth unemployment.

During September businesses across the industry’s supply chain will open their doors to provide free skills training such as CV workshops and interview role-plays for thousands of people in Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Some of the UK’s largest firms are already signed up to take part.

Last year 70 businesses participated, in 700 locations covering every region in the UK. In 2012 the campaign provided 10,000 skills training opportunities with 98% of participants saying they felt more confident applying for a job.

Working in partnership with Jobcentre Plus the national campaign unites the entire food and grocery industry in an effort to tackle youth unemployment. 

Stephen said:

“Unemployment is one of the biggest challenges we face in East Ham – not least amongst young people. The area has some fantastic food and grocery businesses and this campaign is an opportunity for them to offer important skills training to those who need it most. For the local young unemployed to get maximum value from this scheme we need as many food and grocery businesses as possible in the area to sign up.”

Joanne Denney-Finch OBE, Chief Executive of IGD, said:

“The food and grocery industry is Britain’s largest private sector employer, accounting for one in seven of all jobs, employing 3.7m people. It is an industry in which it’s possible to start from the bottom and get to the very top – even with very few qualifications.

“For the month of September we want as many companies and organisations as possible to offer some pre-employment training. Even if you can just provide one session lasting a couple of hours and providing a few hints and tips on interviews, or a CV workshop – it all counts.”

If young unemployed people are interested in Feeding Britain’s Future, they should ask at their local Jobcentre Plus.

Businesses interested in taking part can find out more at www.igd.com/feedingbritainsfuture 

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AuthorStephen Timms