The New Horizons project focuses on preparing and supporting young vulnerable people for key points of transition, e.g. leaving compulsory education or transition from NEET to EET. Its focus is on developing young people’s resilience to self sustain transitions and progression. It is funded through the DWP Innovation Fund through a payment by results model.
New Horizons is targeted at those young people with attendance or/and behavioural issues in school at Key Stage 4 and NEET young people aged 16 -24, who are: Young Offenders (under order, ex offender, or ‘at risk’ e.g. under warning/caution); In Care/Leaving Care; or have Learning Difficulties/Disabilities.
Clients will undertake a 12 week intensive programme supported by their own Connexions individual coach followed by a further 8 months tapered support and activity provided by a Connexions coach or one of our four subcontractors, Business in the Community, Forum Housing, Fusion 21 and Local Solutions. New Horizons is Open College Network accredited to NQF 1 and content and support is individually tailored to client need around the following “core” elements:
Developing resilience and employability – a pooling of existing client existing assessments and application of a new Mental Toughness psychometric test to measure resilience, providing the central foundation of the client Action Plan, focused on building resilience and motivation so that clients are equipped to self sustain their progression. Mental Toughness focuses on objectively measuring a client’s control, confidence, commitment and capacity for challenge, enabling the necessary areas to be developed within the Action Plan. We will work with their family/carer to develop the latter’s capacity to support the client make positive progression. Intensive careers information, advice and guidance will help raise and frame the client’s vocational aspiration. In additional to personal development and motivational activity, Personal Brand will focus on CV, job search, interview skills and mock interviews with our own employer engagement staff and business volunteers.
Exposure to the World of Work - For pupils at Key Stage 4 there will be exposure to the world of work aligned to their vocational preference. This includes work place visits and work tasters alongside associated exercises to consolidate their learning. Building Brighter Futures days held in the workplace and facilitated by business volunteers are designed to develop both sector specific and wider skills required for employment. For NEET clients there will be access to specifically designed vocational courses run by one of the four subcontractors on the project and work placements.
Positive progression – in addition to preparing clients to compete on an even footing in the wider jobs market, our partnership comprises organisations with a track record of creating and sourcing ring fenced opportunities for clients. This will provide a pool of 650 New Horizons-specific job opportunities. For those not immediately progressing, Work Ready Clubs will help maintain momentum and work seeking.