Schools and businesses to discuss unemployment in Fenland at skills summit

FENLAND schools and businesses will discuss ways of tackling rising youth unemployment next week at a skills summit supported by this newspaper.

The summit, taking place at the Boathouse in Wisbech, will see business leaders and heads of Fenland’s secondary schools discussing how they can work together to help prepare young people for work.

Businesses will have an opportunity to explain what skills they need from employees and an interactive seminar will show a journey of a young person battling unemployment.

It will finish with a Q&A involving a panel of experts in skills, recruitment, training and apprenticeships.

The summit is supported by Fenland District Council, Cambridgeshire Chambers of Commerce, the Fenland Partnership, the College of West Anglia and the Cambs Times/Wisbech Standard.

Amy Wilson, the council’s economic development officer, said: “Since employers and students came together at last year’s event, the Fenland Enterprise in Education project has been developed which aims to bring schools and businesses together to improve opportunities for young people to develop employability skills.

“This year there will be a presentation by Katie Hart, the FEE project manager, who will give an update on what’s happening with the project, hear ideas for activities and explain how businesses could benefit from getting involved.”

Most Read

The summit comes as figures reveal the number of people looking for work in Fenland has risen by 0.5 per cent in the past year - from 2,405 to 2,682.

Chief executive John Bridge, chief executive of Cambridgeshire Chambers of Commerce, said: “It is important for local businesses in Fenland to work with the local education providers to give young people the best chance of succeeding in the workplace.

“Having a consistent dialogue between the two will ensure that, as things inevitably change and move forward, young people are still entering the world of work well prepared.”

• Tuesday’s event, which runs from 8.45am-2pm, includes a networking lunch and a free information guide with details of a range of current funding and support opportunities. Attendance is free, however places are limited and need to be booked in advance.

CONTACT: Kelly Hewitt on 01733 370809 or e-mail