Last month our UK2030 Earn working group took to Rhyl, North Wales, to hear from local businesses and young people to understand how the government, businesses, educators and the third sector can better invest in the next generation – to give young people a greater stake in society.

Chaired by Alison Brittain, Chief Executive of Whitbread – and supported by others including: Dame Carole Easton, Chief Executive of the Young Women’s Trust; Danny Mortimer, Chief Executive of NHS Employers; Sandy MacDonald, Head of Sustainability at Standard Life; and supported by Young Ambassadors – the group put aside their day jobs to solely focus on developing actionable recommendations that will empower young people to succeed in employment.

Alison said:

We need to think not only about today’s changes in society, but also what the future holds for our young people.

The day began with a presentation from Mike Horrocks, from the Economic and Business Development team in Denbighshire, who outlined plans for Rhyl’s regeneration before the group began a walking tour of the town.

Over lunch, the group – also made up of Mike Learmond, Senior Development Manager from FSB; and Efaz Ahmed, Young Ambassador – had the opportunity to speak to individuals involved in an employability and training programme at local restaurant 1891, before moving onto an expert round table to share experiences, initiatives and research to inform the team’s thinking.

From considering what a ‘good’ job for a young person looks like and workplace challenges to how we can help more young people access the labour market, ideas were fleshed out in both a local and national context to help everyone involved in UK2030 to get the best out of the discussion.

Felicity Chandler, from Denbighshire Council, who sat on the round table said:

Our aim was to employ young people, not necessarily with the experience, but with the transferable skills to thrive in the sector.

This was just the beginning, but a crucial first step in identifying how we can pull together to provide the right type of support to young people, when and where they need it. The Earn group continues its research with a second field trip in Birmingham next month, where they will be able to see an urban context to begin to develop regional comparisons. Watch this space for more details.