Create work placements for young people

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Reading UK
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Article contributed by New Directions College

Applying for The Kickstart Scheme




Kickstart Business Support

The Kickstart Scheme was announced in July 2020 as part of the Chancellor’s Plan for Jobs to support the UK’s economic recovery.

The scheme aims to create thousands of high-quality six-month work placements for young people aged 16 to 24 who are claiming Universal Credit and are at risk of long-term unemployment.

Under the scheme, the Government will cover 100% of the National Minimum Wage (or the National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant) for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months.

This includes the employee’s salary, as well as National Insurance and minimum pension contributions. New Directions College, part of Reading Borough Council, in partnership with Reading UK CIC are acting as a Gateway Provider for the Kickstart Scheme.

Employers who would like further information can contact Besmir Baxha or call 07929 787 697.

Applying is simple and you will have full support through each stage of the process. Apply as a potential employer for the Kickstart Scheme.



More detailed information and support

New Directions College, part of Reading Borough Council,  in partnership with Reading UK CIC are acting as a Gateway Provider for the Kickstart Scheme.

If you are an employer looking to offer a job placement through the Kickstart Scheme, you can register your interest here

In order for us to apply for grant funding, on behalf of an employer, we must have a collective total of 30 job placements secured in the local area. We will notify you when this target has been met and we are in the process of applying for funding on your behalf.

It is anticipated that the first grants for the Kickstart Scheme will be made available from November 2020.

Young people can find out more about the Kickstart Scheme at the jobhelp site:

Information for Employers:

The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to employers to create new 6-month job placements for young people who are currently on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment.

This is part of the government’s Plan for Jobs and aims to create hundreds and thousands of new, fully funded jobs across England, Scotland and Wales. The first placements are likely to be available from November.

How the scheme works

The job placements should support the participants to develop the skills and experience they need to find work after completing the scheme. New Directions College can work with you to offer training and support for all of your placements.

What funding is available

Funding is available for:

  • 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week
  • associated employer National Insurance contributions
  • employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions

Monthly wage cost payments, paid in arrears, for each participant.  There is also £1500 per job placement available for setup costs, support and training.

The job placements created with Kickstart funding must be new jobs.

They must not:

  • replace existing or planned vacancies
  • cause existing employees or contractors to lose or reduce their employment
The roles you are applying for must be:
  • a minimum of 25 hours per week, for 6 months
  • paid at least the National Minimum Wage for their age group
  • should not require people to undertake extensive training before they begin the job placement
Each application should include how you will help the participants to develop their skills and experience, including:
  • support to look for long-term work, including career advice and setting goals
  • support with CV and interview preparations
  • supporting the participant with basic skills, such as attendance, timekeeping and teamwork


New Directions College can support you with this and make sure that all young people participating in Kickstart job placements are supported to be ready for the job, to learn on the job and make progress at the end. We will contact you to discuss this further, once the grant application has been submitted.


How to apply

If you’re creating more than 30 job placements

If your organisation is creating more than 30 job placements as part of the Kickstart Scheme, you can submit your application directly.

Start your application

If you’re creating fewer than 30 job placements

As a Gateway Provider, New Directions College, part of Reading Borough Council, can submit an application on your behalf. Please complete this online from to begin the process: Form

Other help you can get

Kickstart is not an Apprenticeship, but participants may move on to an apprenticeship at any time during, or after their job placement.

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