Our three-year Youth Project, which came to an end in March 2023, has seen our team at Groundwork West Midlands support 15 to 24-year-olds into work, training and education.

As part of this project we provided a dedicated coach – an experienced youth work professional – who supported all the young individuals to set positive goals, have a positive work attitude and to navigate their own personal plan towards employment.

This project, for young people in Coventry and Warwickshire, focused on supporting people who were deemed furthest from getting into work, training or back into education. The project provided personalised, one-to-one support, offering a helping hand to get those who need it back on the path to a successful future.

This all helped to increase the confidence, self-esteem and the wellbeing of those enrolled, boosting social and personal skills as well as employability.

We have worked in schools, alternative provisions, and homes to ensure we are working with those most at need. We have also worked alongside family support workers, Warwickshire Attendance Service, early helps workers and other professionals.

All young people create a personalised action plan when they start to ensure we tailor the project to their specific needs. An initial assessment highlights their current barriers and difficulties and coaches provide support to overcome these.

Common barriers that coaches help young people address include family difficulties, SEN support needs, anger management, emotion regulation, youth crime, drug and alcohol misuse, disadvantaged backgrounds, mental health concerns and a lack of opportunities.

Coaches have a wide range of knowledge of services and opportunities that are available to young people to help alleviate these difficulties and have strong knowledge of the education system and their rights to help advocate for the young people.

Our coaches work in tandem to reduce the impact of these barriers on the students and inspire them by looking to the future and showing them what they are capable of achieving. Many students access work experience and taster days whilst on our project to help them picture the future and make decisions about what they might like to do.

We are delighted to say that through the three-year project, we supported 180 young people, of which 80 progressed into education or training, and seven found a job.

This was such a successful project for us, and we are dedicated to continuing this support and potentially extending and expanding this project. 

If you would like help with supporting a young person, please contact us to find out how we can run this project for you.

Read About Megan’s Story

Megan found mainstream secondary school really difficult. Her anxiety had become so challenging that she was unable to access schooling for part of year 10 and the whole of year 11, which meant she was leaving education with no GCSEs. She had not been able to leave the house for most of the last few years, her social interaction was minimal, and her anxiety was increasing.

Through our Youth Project, Megan worked closely with her coach to discuss her anxieties and negative thoughts and try to reframe them. She completed career exploration activities and created a CV to prepare her for the future. She also accessed support from one of our specialist partners to address her anxiety.

After exploring different options with her coach to take her maths and English GCSEs, Megan chose a Prince’s Trust course that provided an environment suited to young people with anxiety and other similar challenges. Megan progressed from spending almost two years indoors and out of education to attending college three days a week. She is growing in confidence every day and is developing new friends and social skills. She is also looking ahead to the future, with plans to become a midwife, a goal that seemed unreachable before getting access to our support.

Read another case study from the Youth Project Programme.