YOUNG people from troubled backgrounds are looking forward to brighter futures after taking part in a training project in Sheffield.
A band of 12 jobless teenagers and young adults from across the city have taken steps to turn their lives around with the help of Peaks College and the Prince’s Trust.
The participants were hand-picked from job centres, charities and other organisations in the summer to take part in a 12-week course designed to give them the skills they need to enter the world of work.
Many of the young people, all aged 17 to 25, come from troubled backgrounds, were under-achievers at school, or have issues which make it difficult for them to find jobs.
As part of the Prince’s Trust Training Programme, the group had to give back to the community by working with organisations such as Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospital, Thornberry Animal Sanctuary and St Wilfrid’s Centre for homeless and socially excluded people.
Since completing the course, all 12 of those who took part have found work, apprenticeships or are set to enter training in the new year. It is the first time the Sheffield College, which runs the Peaks centre in Waterthorpe, has achieved a 100 per cent success rate.
Lee Grundy, course teacher, said: “The idea is to build confidence. Some of these young people have nothing. We went around looking for those who would benefit most.
“It’s fantastic. It has never been done in the college before where we have managed to move everyone on. We’ve got some going into health and social care apprenticeships, another in catering and hospitality, one who is going into sport and another who is setting up on his own.”
The group was presented with certificates at a special ceremony at the Copthorne Hotel, Bramall Lane, where each young person gave a speech about their hopes for the future.