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Norwich jobs drive reaches magic number

12:05 21 February 2014

KLM four-year apprentices, Jake Hishon, 19, left, and Matthew Browne, 19, who spoke at Norwich For Jobs event. Picture: Denise Bradley

KLM four-year apprentices, Jake Hishon, 19, left, and Matthew Browne, 19, who spoke at Norwich For Jobs event. Picture: Denise Bradley

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Norwich For Jobs campaign organisers owed a ton of thanks to employers who attended a special One Year On event.

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For enough pledged their commitment to the drive to cut youth unemployment that the magic number of 100 businesses involved in the campaign was reached.

By the end of this morning’s breakfast event in the Fusion Gallery of The Forum in Norwich the number of firms pledging support from help with mock interviews and work placements to jobs and apprenticeships had risen from 87 to 106.

MP Chloe Smith, who launched Norwich For Jobs with the aim of halving the city’s 2000 jobless figure for 18 to 26-year-olds in two years, told the gathering of employers, young people and campaign partners that they were ahead of target having placed 511 young people in work at the half way stage.

She said: “We are not just talking statistics. Every one of those 511 young people is now taking home a pay packet and gaining experience.”

Ms Smith said the campaign’s successful recipe had involved “encouraging local businesses, connecting young people to opportunities and focusing the community on the common goal of getting young Norwich working”.

She praised the collaboration of key organisations such as Norwich Job Centre and the University of East Anglia which had sponsored two Norwich For Jobs internships.

She said the campaign had been recognised by such leading figures as the prime minister and the Bishop of Norwich and praised by the employment minister as “pioneering” and a “shining example”.

Event speakers included young entrepreneur Kieran Miles and KLM Engineering apprentices Matthew Browne and Jake Hishon, both 19.

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