BRADFORD Council has been confirmed as one of the key organisations helping smaller employers Kickstart Bradford's recovery as part of a new Government-funded scheme.

Hundreds of organisations nationally have stepped up to support smaller companies wanting to create jobs for younger people and take advantage of the landmark Kickstart Scheme.

More than 500 bodies have signed up to serve as gateways on the £2bn programme, providing assistance to employers offering fewer than 30 vacancies under the scheme.

Organisations, including the Council, will help firms with their applications and deliver the support each young person needs to make a success of their Kickstart role, increasing their chances of securing sustainable employment in future.

Launched earlier this month, Kickstart will create hundreds of thousands of new fully-subsidised roles for young people as part of efforts to ensure opportunities for those starting out in their career and at risk of long-term unemployment.

A growing list of gateways will ensure that small and medium sized employers wanting to get involved in the scheme will be able to find a suitable gateway provider in their area and work with them to submit an application.

As of last week there were already 139 Kickstart placements across West Yorkshire and initial contact from 230 employers in the first week.

There has been a lot of interest in Bradford from small and medium employers across a range of sectors including hospitality and facilities management.

The Council already has expressions of interest from over 30 organisations for Kickstart but are keen to hear from as many local businesses as possible.

Employers can register their interest by emailing by October 2.

Councillor Imran Khan, deputy leader and portfolio holder for education, employment and akills, said: “Helping to create job opportunities is an important priority and we are doing everything we can to reduce the impacts of Covid-19.

“We welcome all expressions of interest from local organisations that would like to participate in the scheme and will be working hard to make this programme a local success.”

Work and Pensions Secretary Therese Coffey said: "Our growing list of gateways will make it easier for smaller employers to find their local gateways who will support their application and help provide wrap around support for the young people who get onto the scheme.

“We are also encouraging more organisations to step forward as gateways to support this national effort and get behind the career ambitions of the next generation.”

The Government will fully fund each Kickstart placement - paying 100 per cent of the age-relevant National Minimum Wage, National Insurance and pension contributions for 25 hours a week.

Employers will be able to top up this wage, while the Government will also pay employers £1,500 to set up support and training, as well as helping pay for uniforms and other set up costs.

The jobs will give young people – who are more likely to have been furloughed, with many working in sectors disproportionately hit by the pandemic - the opportunity to build their skills in the workplace and to gain experience to improve their chances of finding long-term work.

Employers planning to offer more than 30 posts can apply direct to the scheme.

Employers with less than 30 can join a consortium which the Council is helping to put together.

The new programme will enhance the Council’s existing workforce development strategy which highlights the need for young people and unemployed residents to develop the skills sought by local employers.

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