How can 14 /15 year old get work experience?

(16 Posts)
HmmmIwonder Mon 03-Jun-13 16:27:04

Dd will be applying for sixth form college in Sept this year. She will have just turned 15 the previous month.
One of the questions on the college application form asks about what work experience she has done. Most of her friends are 15 now, and some have part time jobs, or volunteer in charity shops, but are only eligible to do this because they're 15.
We've looked for voluntary opportunities for her - doing anything! - but everything seems to be open only to 15+ year olds.
I'm worried that she will be at an unfair disadvantage when she fills in the application for the sixth form college because as a lot of the other applicants will be 16, or nearly 16, and will have had part time jobs/done voluntary work.
How can she get experience at only 14?

monikar Mon 03-Jun-13 18:41:08

My DD is in year 12 and applied for several sixth forms. One of the sixth forms asked about work experience and charity work - DD put down that she had helped with the kids summer camp (a week) connected with the local church. When she went for an interview it was just something to get the conversation started.

I honestly don't think your DD will be at a disadvantage if she doesn't have any work experience to put down on her form. All the sixth forms my DD applied for were only really concerned with whether she would be able to get the grades needed at GCSE to pursue her chosen subjects at AS level. In my experience, extra-curricular activities are not going to influence whether she is offered a place or not.

Hope that helps a little, applying for sixth form is very worrying.

antshouse Mon 03-Jun-13 19:08:40

Do you have a branch of Barbados locally. Dd volunteers there and has done since 14.

HmmmIwonder Mon 03-Jun-13 20:15:48

Thanks for your replies. We've got a Barnardos (?) but they only take on 15 year olds - maybe it's different in different cities..

antshouse Mon 03-Jun-13 20:41:32

Bloody phones autocorrect.

Dd just asked for the application form (it seemed to be a universal one) and there was space for parental consent to work there for under 16's. They knew she was only 14 but may have allowed her to start as she was doing her D of E.

HmmmIwonder Mon 03-Jun-13 20:44:06

Thanks antshouse, someone told me you had to be 15 and I left it, but I'll get the form for her now - thanks very much. And you've spurred me on to ask at all the other charity shops while I'm at it, there are loads of them. If she could do a week or two in the summer holidays that would be great, kill two birds with one stone, keep her occupied as well. !

antshouse Mon 03-Jun-13 20:59:09

Just asked dd where her other friends are volunteering. One is at a British heart foundation shop (again just said it was for d of e) and another helps at a brownie pack. Both girls are still 14.

Our local library is after over 13 to help with a summer childrens reading scheme too.

HmmmIwonder Mon 03-Jun-13 21:50:00

The library thing sounds right up DDs street, was it advertised in the library? Wonder if it's part of a national scheme......

antshouse Tue 04-Jun-13 14:37:05

It was advertised on posters at the local and town librarys. Seems to be a widespead scheme. readingagency.org.uk/children/quick-guides/summer-reading-challenge/ .Information about volunteering is also on the website but you would need to ask locally. No idea if link will work but google it if not.

If that's the kind of thing she would enjoy maybe she could ask local museum service if they need help with any childrens summer activities days.

DDs tutor was one of her referees but her reference had to be checked and approved by the school office (well I woulldn't want them sending her details to any one who asked) . That took weeks. Maybe try to opt for family friends or parents of her friends for refs as its getting close to the summer holidays.

Good luck to your DD.

Leeds2 Tue 04-Jun-13 16:12:15

A lot of my DD's friends help at Brownie packs, and they are 14. Might be worth trying.

Or maybe do a course, such as life guarding or first aiding, which she could put in the work experience box.

Could also deliver the free weekly paper, if she wants paying! You don't need to be 15 for that round here.

BackforGood Fri 07-Jun-13 14:52:29

dd (now 14) delivers the free weekly paper. Paid, and gives evidence of her 'work ethic'.
She also volunteers at the local Beaver Colony.
She also instructs kayaking (technically assisting, as not old enough to lead on her own, but they know what she can do and she leads some sessions under their supervision.
She also babysits - I go with her and work or read, and it gives the parents the confidence to know there's an 'adult' there if ever needed, but she actually does all the work and is gaining the experience.

What skills / interests does your dd have ?

bigbluebus Fri 07-Jun-13 22:03:50

My DS volunteered at the local library for his DofE. He was definitely only 14 when he started doing it. He was offered the opportunity to help at Cubs too - one of the DofE leaders was also a Cub leader and she definitely knew how old he was. He didn't take that one up, but one of his 14yo friends did. Another of his friends helped at the local childrens football coaching sessions.
I think there are plenty of places that will take 14 year olds if you ask around.
My DH took a work experience placement girl for a week and she was only 14 - was in Yr 10 but late July birthday - although she was a neighbour's child, so he did know the family and she was a mature and sensible 14.

bruffin Fri 07-Jun-13 22:41:55

My dd has volunteered at a SEN playscheme on a Saturday and in school holidays since she was 12 and also a SEN swim club.

Alonglongway Sun 09-Jun-13 00:31:21

My dd volunteers in the local library to support the summer reading challenge - she picked it up through school when she was 13 and then did it directly last year. She listens to the children reading, asks them questions about the books, writes up the index cards etc

HmmmIwonder Fri 02-Aug-13 09:21:10

I'm back, antshouse and alonglongway . Dd now has a voluntary job for the summer at the library, and she loves it, and she's getting lots of experience doing all sorts of stuff. we might never have heard of it if it wasn't for you so THANK YOU flowers !

Turniptwirl Fri 02-Aug-13 11:18:38

I'm glad dd is sorted

I was gonna suggest helping at brownies or rainbows, maybe something she could do in term time if she fancies it and has time?

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