An initiative to help young people learn about and access the workplace was launched on November 26 at Horsham’s Capitol Theatre. Take OFF, ‘Our Future First’, is an online resource developed by local school students with the support and guidance of career and employment professionals from LoveLocalJobs.com and Horsham District Council, along with employers and other local authorities across the Gatwick Diamond area.
Take OFF offers advice on how to look for and apply for jobs, how to deliver the perfect interview and an insight into what employers expect from young people joining their business. Key resources include interviews with local hiring managers and business people with knowledge of the local job markets.
Leigh Chambers, Economic Development Officer for Employment with Horsham District Council, hosted the launch event. He said: “The reason why Take OFF is so successful is because it has been designed by young people for young people. This makes it a resource that they want to use because it presents relevant information in a format that they can engage with. So you’ll find the information presented in videos, infographics and snappy statistics, which are far more appealing than reams of text”.
Ed Hellawell (14), a student at The Forest School in Horsham, said that working on Take OFF had given him a real understanding of how to find a rewarding career. “We had the opportunity to talk to local employers and find out what qualifications and skills they look for. We learnt how to write CVs and how to behave in an interview. I feel much more confident about my future career now.”
Georgina Angele, Senior Partnerships Manager at LoveLocalJobs.com, said: “This project is a fantastic collaboration between schools, businesses and local authorities which will help prepare young people for work, and inspire them to find the right path through education to find a rewarding job that they enjoy. We’re very grateful to all the local businesses and councils that have supported this project. The students have been brilliant throughout the project too.”
The students, who are from the Forest School, the College of Richard Collyer in Horsham, Manor Green College in Crawley and Oathall Community College in Haywards Heath, were presented with certificates of achievement by Rosemary French OBE, Executive Director of the Gatwick Diamond Initiative.
Take OFF is a partnership between LoveLocalJobs.com and Horsham District Council, Crawley Borough Council, Mid Sussex District Council, West Sussex County Council and the Gatwick Diamond Initiative. Other organisations that took part in creating the video content in Take OFF include American Express, Nestle, KPMG, Mayo Wynne Baxter, Sainsbury’s, Extech, Make Media, Berkeley Homes, Gatwick Airport, Search Consultancy, RBS, Arora Hotel, Richard Place Dobson, South Lodge Hotel and Varian.