Ingredients for success: partnerships, youth programmes and work-ready

17 November 2021
Rebecca Wheeler 1

Soni, MYT Support Worker with Hoani, Marlborough Lines first YEP six- month contract recipient, and Tim Cosgrove, CEO MLL

Rebecca Wheeler, HR Manager Marlborough Lines talks to YEP about why connecting with youth programmes is important for young people in her community.

Why did you link in with Marlborough Youth Trust (MYT) youth programme and why is it important?

Our mission is to deliver sustainable regional growth and equity through people, technology, and environmental leadership. We see our partnership with MYT as a key part of achieving this mission. We also are a key employer in the region and want to help provide opportunities for young people to remain in Marlborough, rather than move away from the region. 

How long have you been connected with the programme?

Just over a year.

How many students have done work experience with you? 

Four plus we have had groups of 10 students come and do a tour of our workplace to learn more about what we do and the types of jobs at MLL.

Have any of them secured an apprenticeship or work due to it? 

Two were offered a six month fixed term contract for further work experience.

Can you describe what type of work experience they have been doing? 

In our store (warehouse) – general warehouse duties, stocktaking, pickups and deliveries, helping our maintenance foreman with various jobs around our depot.

In your opinion, how has the Marlborough Youth Trust youth programme set up young people to work? 

It gives them the opportunity to get to know a local business and what opportunities it can provide. It gave them exposure to lots of different people from around the business. Gets them into the routine of full-time work and having to be responsible for getting to work on time and turning up every day.

As a business, what support do you give the young person? 

They are paid for the hours they work either by voucher when doing work experience, or through normal payroll if on a six-month contract. We assign a mentor/buddy to work with them. And give them the opportunity to go for their forklift license and to be exposed to a variety of work.

What advice would you give to other businesses considering on working with youth employability programmes in their area? 

Be prepared for a time commitment, they need more support than others, a bit more ‘hand-holding’ depending on their work experience and background. It can be very rewarding and fun. We enjoyed having a young person as part of the team.

Rebecca Wheeler 2

One of the groups of YEP students having a tour of Marlborough Lines Taylor Pass depot.