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Unemployed Youth Urged to Take a UK Gap Year

Wednesday 3rd August 2011

A gap year can help to boost a young person’s employability

Young people concerned by the prospect of life after school or  college in the current difficult jobs market (and rising cost of university tuition fees) can choose, instead, to build their skills and improve their CV by volunteering to mentor young people, support homeless people and enable people with disabilities to live independently. A gap year with volunteering charity, CSV, can last 6-12 months and does not cost a penny.  Volunteers live away from home in local communities throughout the UK and are provided with free accommodation, subsistence and travel expenses.

CSV surveyed former volunteers and found their gap year to have been highly positive with out of 10 saying they thought that their volunteering experience boosted their job prospects afterwards. They also noted that:
•    84% say the experience increases employability
•    96% say the experience develops skills
•    77% say the experience helps distinguish them from other job seekers

BBC Five Live Presenter, Rachel Burden, says: “I spent my CSV gap year being the hands and feet of an extraordinarily inspirational woman who lives a full and meaningful life despite being paralysed. Volunteers enable her to live independently and to retain control despite acute physical impairment. It had a profound effect on my life and the benefits of volunteering are endless! I found volunteering enormously rewarding; it increased my confidence, I learnt new life skills, I made friends and most importantly, I had a huge amount of fun.”

Is Szoneberg, CSV Director for Gap Year volunteering, says: “Unemployed young people wishing to volunteer can be an invaluable resource to tackling real need throughout the UK. A common misconception of unemployed young people is that they are lazy and a problem to society but as volunteers they bring an abundance of energy and enthusiasm. The benefits of volunteering are enormous; not only do people find their dream career, they gain personal development, learn to overcome challenges, they increase their independence and gain a real sense of achievement and responsibility; vital skills for any career.”

For more information about volunteering with CSV visit their website.