Project information

Support for disadvantaged young learners

Young people out of work/training are more likely to experience mental illness and isolation. We want to provide more support and resources for disadvantaged young learners to maximise their opportunities to achieve. Tackling unemployment at early age is shown to decrease worklessness in later life.

December 2015 - December 2016

Charity information: The Learning Curve (Voluntary Sector Development)

The Learning Curve (Voluntary Sector Development) logo
  • Need


    Many of the young learners we support through parenting and employability courses have to overcome multiple complex barriers and often have troubled backgrounds.


    - New laptops in training venues for learners to practice IT skills, enhance their learning through additional self-directed online research, update CVs and carry out job searching
    - Specialist one to one support to help with CV writing and interview practice
    - New equipment for parenting courses to enable young parents to plan, design and make a resource for their baby
    - hardship fund to help with clothing for work experience/interviews, childcare, travel, breakfasts to enable participation

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To ensure that no learner is excluded through personal circumstances such as financial or childcare


    » Set up hardship fund to support the most vulnerable learners & enable them to progress e.g. providing interview clothes, childcare, breakfasts, travel

    This will be measured through monitoring learner retention figures and success rates. Where learners drop out of courses early, reasons will be explored to check not for £ reasons

    Aim 2

    To provide specialist support to enable learners to progress into employment or further training


    » Have new laptops available in training rooms for learners to carry out self-directed research into jobs & courses, apply online, update CVs
    » Provide 1-2-1 support to practice interview skills and CV writing using in-house expertise from HR & careers advisers to complement existing teaching

    This will be measured through monitoring learner progression routes after the course. Progression for young parents in particular is an area we aim to improve from 59% to 75%

    Aim 3

    Improve facilities on young parents courses to help learners gain practical & planning skills


    » Provide new craft equipment for learners to plan, design & make a resource for their baby. Currently tutors bring in own resources due to lack of fund

    This will be measured through soft outcomes including learner feedback and quality of craft projects. We would also like to see tutors no longer having to bring in own equipment.

  • Impact


    Research shows that young people who experience long term unemployment early in life are more likely to experience worklessness throughout their life, which is why our charity prioritises work with young people. We will keep in touch with ex-learners to monitor their progress and feature their successes in case studies, social media and newsletters to inspire future learners to engage in our programmes. We also hope that their success stories will inspire employers to give young people a chance.


    1) Key personnel leaving: mitigated by succession planning, cross training staff to share expertise (including secondments, internal training days, coaching), monitoring exit interview feedback and providing development opportunities, support and salary progression to aid retention

    2) Cuts to Gov funding to EFA & SFA budgets. We have taken measures to cut provision in locations furthest from our core locations in Wilts/Swindon to protect this delivery, as well as diversifying income


    Newsletters. We encourage donors to follow us on social media where we share learner success stories. Donors welcome to attend learners end of course presentations to witness their achievements. Additional reports e.g. statistics on learner success rates & progression routes can be provided

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £6,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £2,900 Laptops Cost of 5 laptops plus setting them up with relevant software
      £800 Craft Equipment Including handheld sewing machines and craft resources
      £800 Specialist staff time To provide CV and interview support
      £1,500 Hardship fund Covering clothing, breakfasts, travel, childcare for vulnerable learners
  • Background


    We run young parents courses (for mums to be and parents with children aged up to 2) across Wiltshire and Swindon, typically from Children's Centres.

    We run the Prince's Trust Team programme (employability and personal development course) for 16-25 year olds based from community venues in Salisbury and Trowbridge. We draw learners from surrounding towns including Melksham, Tidworth and Chippenham.


    Young people 16-25 from a variety of backgrounds, including care leavers, young offenders and young parents. Many learners lack the support network we take for granted and struggle with trusting new people. Many of our learners have had poor experience of school education and lack qualifications. Some learners have additional needs including autistic spectrum disorders, self-harming or mental health issues. Virtually all of the young people lack self-esteem and grow in confidence over the course

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    As an established education charity, we have a strong track record in changing young lives through the power of learning. As a result of our work, disadvantaged people are better able to support themselves economically and achieve their goals. As an Investors in People Silver standard and Matrix award holder, we have a talented and committed workforce and inspirational leadership team who are all committed to our mission and values and focused on achieving the best outcomes for our learners.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Rachel Loxston

    Delivery Manager leading a team of tutors to provide young people's courses in Wiltshire & Swindon. Also manages performance reporting team.

    Kathryn Roynon

    HR & Central Services manager ensures we have the right people with the right skills to deliver project and also for marketing. Interview coaching.

    Gemma Snell

    Team Leader for The Learning Curve Salisbury Prince's Trust Team programme

    Craig Enderby

    Team Leader for The Learning Curve Trowbridge Prince's Trust Team programme