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What is LifeSkills?


Let's face it, it's a pretty tough time to be entering the world of work, and if you have no experience of the workplace and lack the skills you need to get a foot in the door, it's even tougher.

Introducing LifeSkills – a new programme giving young people the skills, information and most importantly the work experience opportunities they need to get ready for the world of work. But we need your help. We need schools, businesses and organisations from all over the UK to show their support and offer whatever help they can to help young people. LifeSkills is aiming to help get one million young people ready for work by 2015, so we need to get the message out there.

LifeSkills employs hands-on learning to give young people from the age of 11 to 19, the confidence they need to get started. Even if your child is a bit young for LifeSkills right now, you know it's never too early to start thinking about their future and you can still support LifeSkills to help ensure help is there when they do need it. Spread the word, get your schools involved, and sign your workplace up to offer work experience opportunities – let's get LifeSkills moving and helping as many young people as possible now.

Aren't kids already being taught this in schools?

Since September 2012 schools have been individually responsible for funding their careers services due to changes introduced in the Education Act 2011. Limited resources mean reduced careers guidance services and work experience is no longer compulsory.

Last year Barclays carried out research into young people's feelings about employment and found that 72%  of 14-25 year olds don't believe they will achieve their career ambitions. 28% believe this is because they don't have the necessary connections to do so.

LifeSkills is needed more than ever to remove the barriers young people face in moving from school to work.

How does LifeSkills help young people?

The LifeSkills classroom based lesson plans and volunteer workshops are divided into three modules: Work Skills, Money Skills and People Skills, helping young people:

  • Write standout CVs
  • Perfect interview techniques
  • Manage their money
  • Develop communication skills
  • Make career choices and much more

Next up is the practical experience. Students are set up on placements that suit their ambitions and skills, with organisations large and small who have partnered with Barclays on the LifeSkills programme, so their experience is as relevant as possible.

More than all this, LifeSkills encourages young people to build on their aspirations. Self-belief in young people is currently pretty low, and it's high time for a generation-wide confidence boost.

Young people need help to get them feeling more prepared for the future and more motivated to start planning for it.

How can young people get involved?

Students can complete some parts of LifeSkills independently online. However, to get involved in core modules and be eligible for work experience opportunities their school must be registered with the programme. Check whether your local schools are signed up, and recommend LifeSkills to your child's school by sending them the online registration link at Barclayslifeskills.com

How else can I show my support for LifeSkills?

The work experience opportunities offered through LifeSkills are integral to the success of the scheme and they wouldn't be possible without the continued support of businesses, big and small. If you're a business owner you could make a real difference for young people in your area, by offering work experience opportunities through LifeSkills. Students who come to you through LifeSkills will have completed key work skills activities, so you can rest assured they would be ready and willing to work. Who doesn't need an extra pair of hands around the business?

Or get in touch with your boss or HR department to see what work experience opportunities they can provide to help young people.

And remember, getting the message out there to schools, friends, family, whoever you can will give LifeSkills the push it needs to start moving. This is a nationwide move to get young people ready for work, and it needs your support.

To recommend LifeSkills to your child's school or find out more, head to Barclayslifeskills.com and if you want to sign up your business, head to Barclays Connector.

Head to Barclays on Mumsnet for lots more:

  • Expert information on starting your own business
  • Family budgeting and saving tips
  • Money-saving videos and inspiring start-up videos


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Last updated: over 3 years ago