Acacia Training's head office

Just a month after announcing that it will support up to 1000 people towards a new role by the end of the year, Staffordshire-based Acacia Training has been selected to deliver prestigious national programmes on behalf of The Princes Trust and The National Citizenship Service (NCS), both aimed specifically at young people up to the age of 30.

Starting this month, Acacia Training is partnering with The Princes Trust on the delivery of its Health and Social Care Futures Programme.  Aimed at supporting up to 10,000 young people nationally in to health and social care roles over the coming three years, the programme was launched to tackle the combined challenges of addressing increasing vacancy levels in the sector with the impact that the Covid-19 pandemic has had on youth unemployment.  It is specifically aimed at supporting young people from low-income backgrounds, those with sub level 3 training, and those either with special education needs or health issues, whether physical or mental.

Acacia Training’s involvement in the programme will initially be focused on supporting 200 young people nationwide with pre-employability training that will lead either to hands-on care roles, or roles within the care supply chain such as IT, finance, administration, and catering.

Through a five-day intensive induction course, young people will be provided with insight in to the various skills required for potential roles across the health and social care sector.  They will be further supported by Acacia Training as they transition into paid employment in the sector.

Cheryl Shepherd, Head of Employability at Acacia Training, said: “The Princes Trust has a rich heritage focused on a commitment to ensuring that every young person should have a chance to succeed, and its Health and Social Care programme is a practical example of exactly that.

“For Acacia Training, which has its roots in health and social care, we’re acutely aware of the need to address the skills shortage and help fill vacancies across the sector.  We welcome the opportunity to achieve this through The Princes Trust programme and are delighted to be supporting young people on their journey to fulfilling roles in this important sector.

“Whilst we have already partnered with employers with live vacancies as part of this programme, we are always keen to encourage further employers to come forward where they believe they have vacancies that would be suited to these young people.”

Additionally, Acacia Training is one of only seven national training providers that has been selected as a placement partner for the National Citizenship Services’ ‘UK Year of Service’ programme which will give young people a way to engage in community work, make a positive impact in society, get world-ready and work-ready – and get paid for it!

The initiative, which commences in November this year, will give young people an opportunity to access paid work placements, lasting nine to twelve months, in a range of health and care focused roles.  Significantly, participants will receive the national living wage applicable to their age group for the full duration of the placement.

Acacia Training will deliver tailored induction training focused on the skills required for the care sector followed by a fully funded nationally recognised and accredited Level 2 Diploma in Health and Social Care.

Cheryl concludes: “Together, these two schemes address the combined challenges of youth unemployment and staff shortages within the health and social care sector.

“By developing a young person’s skills prior to employment and continuing to deliver and enhance their skills in the workplace, young people will gain a better understanding of the fantastic long term career opportunities that the sector can offer.  I’d encourage any young person looking for a fulfilling career to consider health and social as a career pathway as there is so much to be gained.”