A training provider in North Staffordshire is to treble the number of apprenticeships it delivers for young people every year after receiving a cash boost from the government.
PM Training, a social enterprise that tackles worklessness among young people, has been awarded an additional £250,000, taking its annual budget from the Skills Funding Agency to £575,000.
The cash injection means the organisation, part of the Aspire Group, can now provide 150 apprentices in Stoke-on-Trent every year.
Stephen Lilley, regional apprenticeship director for the Skills Funding Agency, said: “Even though the emergency budget earlier this year cut £6.2 billion from public spending, some of that money was re-invested in key areas, such as apprenticeships.
“This demonstrates an on-going government commitment to apprenticeships and reinforces the view that they are the preferred route for proving a skilled workforce.”
PM Training now partners with 300 local organisations to deliver apprenticeships in a variety of sectors including construction trades, business administration, housing, engineering, landscaping, horticulture and manufacturing.
Will Nixon, chief executive of PM Training, said: “In the past two years, the number of apprenticeships we have delivered has grown from 54 to 150.
“This is down to successful partnership working with local businesses and a very strong belief that every single young person has potential – they just need an opportunity to develop their skills.”
He added: “A funding increase of this size is very gratifying. It demonstrates in the clearest possible way that our work is both worthwhile and necessary.
“We are determined to build on this success and aim to deliver 200 apprenticeship places for 16 to 18-year-olds this year.
“Youth unemployment is at an all time high and the job market is expected to recover more slowly for young people than for adults – this makes our work imperative.”