The UK Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) commissioned ten Social Impact Bonds under the Innovation Fund, to pilot social investment and new delivery models to support disadvantaged young people aged 14 to 24. All of these Social Impact Bonds were designed to increase future employment prospects for teenagers at risk of becoming NEET (not in Employment, Education or Training).
The number of young people who are NEET rose in the ten years between 2003 and 2013, increasing from 10% of all 18 to 24 year olds to just under 20%. There is therefore a strong case for early intervention to prevent young people from becoming NEET.
The Energise programme, delivered by the Adviza Partnership, worked with young people from 42 schools in the Thames Valley. It offers mentoring combined with structured activity days and residential courses and is designed to foster re-engagement with school, to build resilience and confidence. During the project, Adviza introduced a “Job Coach” pathway for the young people looking for employment with support for CV drafting, recruitment fairs, job applications and interviews. The programme has outperformed on attitude, behaviour, level 1 and 2 educational qualifications and 26 weeks employment outcomes.