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Campaign to give youth work skills and help combat unemployment
A CAMPAIGN is underway to help combat youth unemployment in Dorchester.
National charity Personal Finance Education Group (PFEG) wants to see financial education included in the national curriculum.
Chief executive of the charity Tracey Bleakley said: “School-leavers are entering adult life in extremely difficult economic times. Too many young people in Dorchester are still struggling to find work, and the truth is that, in many cases, we are making their problems worse by allowing them to leave school without the skills they need to manage their money well.”
She added: “Budgeting what money you have, understanding how benefits work and avoiding falling into unmanageable debt are just some of the financial skills that are absolutely essential when searching for your first job.”
“Financial education makes a real difference to young people’s lives. We need to give every young person the skills they need to survive and thrive in our economy.”
President of the Dorchester Chamber of Commerce Alison Moore agreed that more could be done to ensure youngsters know how to handle their finances.
But she stressed that it is not only schools that have the responsibility.
“Schools have an awful lot to do already, so perhaps this is something businesses, mentors or other groups could also be helping with.
“Apprenticeships tend to introduce financial education, but perhaps this is something we should be doing to a greater extent, because I do think improving it is a good idea.”
Member of Youth Parliament for Dorset Lloyd Hatton is working with Mrs Moore on a project to set up a Youth Chamber of Commerce to help youngsters looking to develop their business skills.
Thomas Hardye student Lloyd, 16, said: “I think financial education alongside academic education is vital so that young people can get an essential grasp of basic economics.
“It could definitely make it easier to enter a competitive job market, and it is something I would personally like to learn more about, so as I enter job seeking I am able to balance my finances properly.”
The charity offers free resources and support to teachers and schools. For more information, visit pfeg.org