A Peterborough housing association has just secured £50,000 to help people back into work.
Cross Keys Homes, of Shrewsbury Avenue, has been awarded £50,000 by the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Enterprise Partnership from its Prize Challenge fund.
The association plans to invest the money into its Moving 4ward into work programme, which supports young people aged 16 to 24, to get into work through six-month paid placements.
It means Cross Keys Homes will be able to offer placements to more young people and will increase the amount of support offered by establishing mentoring schemes for new pre-apprentices.
The funding will also enable Cross Keys Homes to build up relationships with local private businesses such as Home Group, IKEA and Indesit to offer more chances for apprentices to gain experience.
Christina Malle, the association’s community investment manager, said: “We are really thrilled to have secured the LEP Prize Challenge funding for our Moving 4ward into work pre-apprentice scheme.
“It means that we will be able to help many more disadvantaged young people to gain employment extending the scheme across Peterborough.”
The LEP Prize Challenge has already supported seven schemes with funding of £30,000 with the best three receiving an extra £50,000.
A spokeswoman for the LEP said: “In total the LEP Prize Challenge Fund has invested £360,000 into the local community, creating around 110 paid jobs and supporting almost 300 people to become work-ready.”
Jane Darlington, LEP Prize Challenge Panel member and chief executive of Cambridgeshire Community Foundation, which administers the scheme, said: “The progress after 12 months was interesting to review.
“Some projects had delivered way ahead of their own expectations and others had faced issues and challenges they had not perhaps anticipated.
“The three projects that have been selected to receive further funding in 2015 all showed themselves to be ambitious, have a strong track record of delivering to target in 2014, and offered, over the next 12 months, innovative and significant interventions to make their beneficiaries job ready or employed.”
The Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Enterprise Partnership launched the LEP Prize Challenge in May 2013, committing £1 million to support local voluntary and social enterprise projects that aim to get people furthest from the jobs marks work ready and back into paid employment.