Ealing Council held an event during National Apprenticeship Week to encourage more employers to hire apprentices.
More than 70 businesses attended the event, designed to help businesses understand what’s involved in hiring apprentices, what they can get from it, and what support there is.
The council already has its own scheme, with more than 100 young people taking part since it started in 2007, and an intake of 25 planned for 2012, and an apprentie-led restaurant planned for Southall.
Apprentices have to be supported to work towards nationally recognised qualifications. They are paid an allowance during their training and in the case of those aged 18 and under, the government covers the cost of their qualifications in full.
The council is offering a free follow-up meeting with individual businesses to provide them with advice and support to help them take on apprentices, with the option to work with the council to set up their own schemes.
Council Leader, Councillor Julian Bell, said: “With youth unemployment so high at the moment it can be really daunting for young people who are leaving school. With the cost of university growing, many are looking to go straight into the workplace and apprenticeships are a great option for those who want to be paid while they complete vocational courses.
“I’ve spoken to many companies who have taken on apprentices and it’s generally a hugely positive experience. There are skills shortages in many industries, so it’s always appealing to be able to grow your own talent and develop young people to meet your business’ needs.”