ICE Campus creates more than 200 placements for young jobseekers

Caerphilly’s Innovation Centre for Enterprise has created 213 job placements as the campus becomes the largest Kickstart gateway in the county borough.

ICE has enabled more than 70 local businesses to access the UK government scheme which is designed to support organisations with funded six-month work placements, as well as giving young people who are not in education or training, paid employment experience.

Placements range from admin and care-worker support to social media and marketing positions. All placements are also supported with further training to help them with future employment opportunities.

Employers originally had to be able to take on a minimum of 30 job placements to be approved, and there were specific requirements that meant many individuals needed to apply through an accepted gateway – such as ICE.

One of the businesses to benefit from the funded positions is the child care company, PlayWorks Ltd.

PlayWorks has been supported with over 30 job placements as the business remained open to provide support to keyworkers during the Covid-19 crisis.

Sarah Gardner, senior childcare development manager at PlayWorks, said: “We’ve created a number of roles through the scheme including admin and nursery assistants. During the pandemic, we were able to remain open to offer care for children of frontline workers, and as Wales starts to open back up, we are going to need the support of these new staff members. The process was really straight forward and we are aiming to make most, if not all of the positions permanent after the six-month placement.”

ICE’s Keiran Russell, who is overseeing the Kickstart Scheme said: “We’re really proud to have supported so many businesses accessing the scheme. Paid work placements are often the gateway to continued employment and there’s no substitute for hands-on experience in the workplace.

“It’s a great way to support smaller businesses that are stuck in the ‘chicken and egg’ situation of needing support to generate more revenue, but needing the revenue to afford the support. I know that many of our employers that are using the scheme aim to turn their placements into permanent positions, so it really is a win-win.”

The campus is routinely generating placements and would encourage any businesses interested to get in touch, to see if they are eligible for support.

For more information or to apply, contact Keiran at keiran@welshice.org or call 029 2014 0040.

South Wales Argus | Business