SENIOR FIGURES from across the public, private and third sectors came together this week to unite behind a common goal – to empower young people to play a fundamental role in Welsh growth.
The Growing Wales Together panel discussion, hosted by youth charity The Prince’s Trust Cymru, featured contributions from Julie James, Minister for Skills and Science, Ian Price, CBI Wales and Alwen Williams from BT Cymru. Ali Abdi, of Cardiff University, Sharon James, Cardiff and the Vale College and Phil Jones from The Prince’s Trust Cymru were also on the panel.
The discussion, attended by over 120 guests and held at The Principality Stadium, was chaired by former Permanent Secretary of the Welsh Government, Sir Derek Jones.
Minister for Skills and Science Julie James said, “We want an environment where everyone, regardless of their background can reach their full potential and are committed to working with partners including the Princes Trust Cymru to address the many barriers preventing people from entering and remaining in employment. Ensuring the next generation is given the skills and opportunities they need to play a positive and active role in Welsh growth is a key priority for all of us and our Taking Wales Forward programme includes a commitment to reshape employability support for job ready individuals and those furthest away from the labour market.”
The Prince’s Trust Cymru is increasing its provision for young people in Wales. Parallel to this growth, the charity wants major new projects to be seen as a way to help disadvantaged young people get into high-value work.
Phil Jones, Director of The Prince’s Trust Cymru, said, “There are a number of landmark projects that have the potential to transform communities across Wales. These projects require high-skilled workers and we are determined to enable young Welsh people to move into these roles. In order to achieve that, we need to collaborate better to ensure young people are equipped with the right skills and crucially, the self-belief they need.”
Director of CBI Wales Ian Price, who recently joined The Prince’s Trust Cymru Council, said, “Organisations like The Prince’s Trust can play a crucial role in matching business needs to opportunities for young people. Without making those connections, so many younger people are at risk of being left behind.”
Youth charity The Prince’s Trust Cymru run a range of programmes across Wales to help young people get their lives on track. Three in four young people supported by the charity move into work, education or training.