MSP supports work strategy
Young people benefiting from a £500,000 workforce initiative in Perth and Kinross met Deputy First Minister and Perthshire North MSP John Swinney to discuss the strategy.
Blairgowrie High School pupils Andrew McFarlane and Callum Ritchie discussed the benefits of partnerships between education and employers to help young people get vital work experience.
They took part in a meeting hosted by Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) Perth and Kinross, which is part of a wider national initiative funded by the Scottish Government to help young people into work and ensure employers have access to the skills they need.
Nationally, the aim is to reduce youth unemployment by 40% by 2021 through connecting business and education.
Mr Swinney heard how local mentoring programmes, a focus on apprenticeships and other innovative initiatives are making a significant impact on local young people and helping the region’s businesses.
Andrew McFarlane took part in the Career Ready programme, which offers mentoring, master classes and a paid internship, and was supported by financial services company Aviva in Perth.
The programme shaped his decision to leave school after fifth year to go into work and he is now employed full time as a commercial underwriter at Aviva, which has been involved with Career Ready since 2012.