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Network Rail offers young people career support through charity partnership

Over 150 young people looking to move into employment will be given advice by rail industry employees through a partnership between Network Rail and Barnardo’s.

Since Barnardo’s was named as Network Rail’s charity of choice in 2016, over 50 young people have been given careers advice, and a further 150 care leavers and students in Barnardo’s Education, Training and Skills services are set to benefit between now and March 2019.

To help plan for career workshops across the country, Network Rail boss Mark Carne and colleagues have visited Barnardo’s Redbridge Leaving Care Services to understand the challenges faced by young people when they move towards independent living and finding employment.

“Every child should be able to look to the future with hope. It’s been good to come here and see first-hand the work Barnardo’s does to build self-belief in young people who may not always recognise their transferable life skills or have many positive role models to aspire to,” Carne said.

“As a company we work hard to engage and improve the lives of those in communities surrounding the railway and partnerships such as this with Barnardo’s help us to achieve that aim.”

Josh Ward, project leader in Network Rail’s capability and development team, designed the sessions after he experienced first-hand the difficulties that young people face when looking to gain work experience and enter employment.

Since the partnership was launched in October 2016, it has raised £150,000 and almost 500 Network Rail employees have volunteered nearly 4,000 hours of their time.

Javed Khan, Barnardo’s chief executive, said: “Our partnership with Network Rail is having a real and lasting impact on young lives, and it’s fantastic to know that many more young people are set to benefit from expert careers advice over the next 12 months.”

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