Across the country young people are carrying the cost of the current economic emergency. Jobless figures for those aged 18 to 24 are in crisis with 80,000*people in the age range currently out of work.
It’s a worrying situation for anyone who finds themselves trapped without a job. Now the Big Lottery Fund Scotland is working with projects like the Calman Café and Enterprise Hub run by the Calman Trust in Inverness to offer hope.
Like many others Ross Mackintosh, 20, from Inverness left school two years ago aged 18 with great plans for his future career which foundered as soon as he stared applying for a job. He says,
“I was really excited about starting work and wanted to get a job in retail. I tried job hunting for about six months and was told the same thing at every turn ‘You have no experience.’ I tried not to let it get me down too much and thought I would just keep on trying.”
After a period of unemployment Ross was interviewed by the Calman Trust through the Jobcentre’s Future Jobs Fund for the position of Catering/Retail Assistant at the Artysans Café in Inverness. He was successful and has been working at there for over a year now.
Ross is now due to complete his SVQ in Retails Skills and is keeping one eye firmly on the future. He adds,
“I have learned so much more than I ever thought possible and I think dealing with people is my strongest quality. At some point in the next few months I will start thinking about moving on but want to move to work front of house but in a more supervisory role.
“I can’t imagine how long it would have taken me to find a job without the help of the Calman Trust. In this day and age it’s so important for young people like me to get experience of the working world as it’s so competitive out there.”
He knows just how vital the work and experience has been as he says,
”Being here has been a big help and definitely helped me on my way. This is the first step on the ladder for me.”
*Figures from the Office for National Statistics Oct 17, 2011