Dartford is taking drastic steps to tackle unemployment rates which have increased across the country during the pandemic. 16-25 year olds have been directly impacted, and in some areas, are currently facing the prospect of long-term unemployment.

Dartford Borough Council is working with Kent Invicta Chamber, Job Centre Plus, and North Kent College to support the Government’s Kickstart Scheme, which aims to help young people get the experience they need to start their careers. The scheme is reaching out to local employers with the incentive of a fully funded position if they can offer our young people a new six month placement, with the Government pledging to pay wages up to 25 hours per week (including National Insurance Contributions), along with a payment of up to £1,500 to help with training, uniform, and DBS checks if required. Additionally, North Kent College is offering wraparound support and training packages to ensure that the young person receives everything they need to be the best employee possible, including a skills check, careers guidance, CV support, and interview preparation.

Leader of the Council, Jeremy Kite said, “We’ve always been incredibly proud of the contribution that young people make to our local economy, and did not hesitate to back this scheme to help them find employment during these difficult times. This funding will help Dartford’s businesses provide work opportunities and plug skills gaps, so I would urge them, where possible, to get involved.”

If you can help our local youngsters start their careers, please email: kickstart@kentinvictachamber.co.uk, or call 01233 503838.