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New Year, New Career

Leadership Through Sport and Business (LTSB) is a social mobility charity which supports bright young people from disadvantaged backgrounds into, not only jobs, but sustainable employment via professional apprenticeships. Our vision is a world where every young person can flourish, regardless of their background.

In Liverpool, young people have been disproportionately affected by the Covid-19 pandemic compared to other age groups in terms of losing work or when seeking to enter the labour market. At the end of 2020 10.1% (9,900) of young people aged 16-24 across the Liverpool City Region were classed as unemployed.

We know that young people have the desire and capability to succeed but those from, in particular, disadvantaged backgrounds are held back by a number of factors; they are twice more as likely to not be NEET than their better-off peers, they attend schools where there is insufficient careers advice, and a lack of networks and contacts prevent them from accessing employment opportunities. Indeed 70% of young people still use family connections to get their first job.

One young person from Liverpool recently supported by LTSB is James;

James grew up in an area of Merseyside defined as the amongst the 30% most deprived in the country. He was considering his options post-education and had decided that University was not for him; he wanted to start earning.

When LTSB went into his school and carried out a presentation he decided to pursue the apprenticeship route.

He started on the Business and Finance programme with LTSB in the Autumn of 2018 and really enjoyed the 12-week course especially the speed interviews organised with employers in Liverpool by LTSB. DSG Chartered Accountants were one of these employers and they picked James out and invited him to their offices for a second interview. Shortly afterwards he was offered the opportunity to join their team as an Accounts Advisor starting in post in February 2019.

James said he found it ‘really daunting’ at first but with continuing support from LTSB he settled in and progressed incredibly well. So much so that in May 2021 he won the Apprentice of the Year Award which recognises his dedication and achievements to date.

James said

“Finding out I’d won was a shock really. But also a great honour.. carrying out the sessions with Liverpool FC Foundation [as part of the 12-week bootcamp] really pushed me out of my comfort zone. I didn’t think of myself as confident, but these experiences prepared me for the world of work”.

James is very grateful to his managers at DSG, who are keen to encourage and recognise young talent, for supporting him and also gives credit to LTSB for his success;

“thank you to LTSB for giving me the push to go the apprenticeship route. I would definitely recommend it to anyone out there looking for a different pathway to University”.

We are currently running a fundraising campaign to support at least 50 young people from Liverpool, aged 16 – 24, through our pre-employment programmes in 2022. We have the opportunity for at least 50 young people, who face disadvantage, to participate in the areas of Law, Business & Finance and Customer Care, supporting them into apprenticeship roles with major employers including NatWest and BDO whom we have strong partnerships with. All three programmes will run virtually, with potential for some face-to-face activity where suitable.

For all three programme we will support the young people through a tailored, skills training bootcamp where the young people will develop personal and professional skills to move into the corporate environment.

We will also deliver sector specific training to equip the young people for the professional areas they will be entering as well as run corporate exposure activities and insight sessions. Furthermore, LTSB helps employers to create inclusive working environments to harness a more diverse workforce.

Where necessary we will provide digital packages, suits for interviews and travel bursaries to help young people overcome some of the practical barriers they may face. Finally, all young people, as well as their employers, will receive dedicated support from LTSB for the first crucial 6 – 12 months as they transition into role.

You or your business can help and support us in 2022 – it’s a new year to help our future generation into a new career!

We are always keen to work with new employers, volunteers, mentors, the list goes on, but if you feel you can help in any way then please contact us at or donate to support our aims.

Any support is welcomed and hugely appreciated, so please get in touch and remember to share our hashtag wherever appropriate #newyearnewcareer,

Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year.