MP visits Prince’s Trust
MP for Edinburgh East Sheila Gilmore visited The Prince’s Trust Centre on Ferry Road last Friday to meet young people and discuss the impact of youth unemployment.
The meeting provided an opportunity for the MP to meet a group of under-16’s participating on The Trust’s Fairbridge programme, which focuses on developing key employability skills, as well as participating in a round-table discussion with Prince’s Trust Job Ambassadors who provided an in-depth insight into the challenges they faced whilst unemployed.
The effect unemployment has on young people is significant, according to recent research by The Prince’s Trust. The Youth Index, which gauges young people’s wellbeing across a range of areas from family life to physical health, found that around 33% of those surveyed claimed to feel down or depressed ‘always’ or ‘often’, and that one in five unemployed young people across the UK believe their confidence would never recover from their spell out of work.
Ms Gilmore also got an insight into the range of programmes offered by The Prince’s Trust as a means of engaging with unemployed young people or those struggling at school and at a risk of exclusion.
Sheila Gilmore MP said: “We know that periods of unemployment at a young age can have an adverse impact on people for the rest of their lives. The work that The Prince’s Trust does with young people to help them build up their skills and confidence is crucial in preventing this.”
Speaking after the MP’s visit, Heather Gray, Director of The Prince’s Trust, Scotland, said: “We were delighted to welcome Sheila Gilmore to our Edinburgh Centre. It provided a positive opportunity for Ms Gilmore to meet with young people and hear about the challenges they face in finding employment as well as to discuss what can be done to help young people into employment and training and towards a positive future.”
Heather Johnston, a Job Ambassador for The Prince’s Trust Scotland, was one of the young people who met the MP. She said: “I was unemployed for five years – it is demoralising and can impact heavily on self-esteem. As a Job Ambassador for The Prince’s Trust, it is important we get as much support to ensure young people, like me, get an opportunity to achieve a positive future.”