Young adults in the City of Wolverhampton are overcoming barriers to employment thanks to Black Country Impact.

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That is the verdict of 16 to 29 year olds who have been helped by the project to make a successful transition from unemployment and inactivity to education and working life.

Black Country Impact provides a tailored approach, designed to help the young adult build a future in a way that suits their specific circumstances.

Impact can help overcome the barriers to employment by providing a programme to support employability and skills; a Key Worker trained to support the young adult throughout their journey; advice and guidance, along with customised support tailored to individual circumstances; and possible help with travel, childcare and equipment. The Key Worker can provide brokering between the individual and the job or training opportunity, to make it simpler to start.

Elizabeth, aged 26 and a mother of 2 children with disabilities, is being assisted with the cost of gaining the necessary regulatory approval to turn her hobby of soap making into a business she can run from home. She is also receiving help with CV writing due to her dyslexia and has been put in touch with Let's Talk Business for help on how to start up a business.

Elizabeth said: "I found out about Impact at my local children's centre and met with my Key Worker to look at the options. My youngest son is allergic to perfume and I couldn't find a soap that he could use. That prompted me to look at making my own for family and friends. Now I'm looking to turn it into a business and Impact is giving me all the help I need to make this happen. Things have been tailored to suit my needs and I would recommend Impact to anyone."

Callum aged 20, has successfully landed a construction apprenticeship with the Kier Group after attending several 1 to 1 sessions with his Key Worker to develop and improve his CV, application techniques and interview skills, as well as his communication skills and personal presentation. Callum was given additional support with travel costs to get him to his new role.

After 13 weeks, the feedback from the Kier apprenticeship manager is very positive: "Callum is getting on very well, works hard and follows instructions when asked to do so, we are very pleased with him."

Sanjeev, aged 23, has landed his ideal job after 1 to 1 job search and application completion sessions with his Key Worker.

He said: "I started looking for work with Impact and my Key Worker Dinah Bull was very helpful. She always looked after my best interests and pushed me to apply for work she thought was best for me. Six appointments later I now have a job as a security guard at Amazon."

Jas Kaur, City of Wolverhampton Council Impact Co-ordinator, said: "There can be no doubt these are challenging times for some young adults in the Black Country.

"Black Country Impact is determined to tackle the barriers that may be preventing some young adults from becoming all they can.

"Through specialised services ranging from coaching to managed work placements, our work will ultimately give our young adults the best employability prospects for the future, benefiting them and our communities."

Black Country Impact involves Sandwell, Dudley, Walsall and City of Wolverhampton Councils and Black Country Talent Match (a project led by Wolverhampton Voluntary Sector Council and funded through the Big Lottery Fund). The project has only been possible due to the financial support of the European Union's European Social Fund and Youth Employment Initiative, and further funding through Talent Match funders, the Big Lottery Fund. In total, funders have enabled a package of up to £51 million to be made available for young adults across the Black Country.

To find out how to access Black Country Impact support or for more information please contact Wolverhampton's Impact team on 01902 554031 or e-mail

If you are an employer and want to talk about filling current or future vacancies, and how Impact in the City of Wolverhampton can support you, please contact Julia Jackson Davies on 07392 121944 or email

  • released: Thursday 25 May, 2017