Inspiring Young Adult Carers in their future careers
Apr 11, 2019
As part of our ongoing bid to support local charities through volunteering activities, the PT team has recently been working with Gloucestershire Young Carers. This fantastic charity, based in Twigworth near Gloucester, supports young people who play the role of carer in their families, looking after their ill or disabled loved ones at an age when they are usually being looked after themselves. GYC works alongside professional organisations to help with assessing the young person’s needs, and offers them targeted support including workshops, days out and respite groups in the company of other young carers, as well as one to one sessions with trained GYC staff.
For the past four years, GYC has hosted a ‘YAC Futures’ event – a day designed to help Young Adult Carers to learn more about their future career options. The event is held at Skillzone in Gloucester, which in itself is an inspiring and interactive venue designed to educate people about recognising dangerous situations and staying safe, through the use of a state-of-the-art life-size village.
There were a total of 35 young adult carers booked to attend the day, and the PT volunteer team were there first thing to help set everything up before the attendees arrived. To begin with Jane Dyer, Fundraising Manager at Gloucestershire Young Carers, gave us a tour of Skillzone, taking us through all the brilliant life-like zones where the YAC Futures event was going to take place.
We got stuck into setting up the registration desk, and then rearranging tables and chairs for the lunchtime seating area, and creating a space for refreshments. After that it was a question of creating the ‘tour’ for the young carers – a guided journey around 12 different businesses (including Paish Tooth) who would each be stationed around the Skillzone model village. The concept is somewhat like speed networking – the young carers go round in groups of two or three, and spend five minutes with each business finding out about what it’s like to work in their industry and how to go about getting a job in that field. Amongst those businesses who attended was a magistrate, a magician, a health and beauty firm, a catering business, an IT company, a supermarket, a hairdresser, a nurse and us, a firm of accountants.
The day’s activities
When the young carers arrived there was time for coffee, cake and networking, followed by two workshop sessions. The attendees had a choice of two different workshop topics per session, and the four available themes covered life at university, employment rights, living and working abroad and getting an apprenticeship.
After helping out at lunch and then enjoying a bingo-style ice-breaker activity, the PT team split into two groups. A couple of staff sat at our accountancy careers station, and took time to chat to each of the young carers as they rotated round the visiting businesses. Both members of PT staff are young apprentices themselves, and happily fielded lots of questions from the young carers who were curious to hear from employees whom they could relate to. Meanwhile our director Patrick Cooper helped out as a guide, ensuring attendees knew where they were going and followed the right route around the Skillzone village.
All in all it was a fascinating and really informative day for all of us involved. It was lovely to help support such a worthwhile event, and to help inspire and educate so many young carers so they can start planning an exciting future for themselves. Jane Dyer from GYC said,
“Thank you so much Paish Tooth for donating your time today! We couldn’t have done it without you.”