Business & Education London South Tackles UK Youth Unemployment Head On!

29th of September, 2010 Bookmark and Share
In the last year the number of young people trapped in long-term unemployment in the UK has shot up by 41.9%, Office for National Statistics figures show and according to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s Youth Employment Taskforce, the direct cost of youth unemployment is £4.7bn a year. Business & Education London South (BELS) is concerned that, in the current economic climate, there is a danger of repeating the mistakes of past recessions, which led to lost generations of jobless young people.

BELS works with businesses, educational and voluntary organisations to empower young people and help them into employment and further education through the provision of skills training, coaching, adventure team building, employer engagement and work experience placements. Manning-Prior will lead the expansion of the Charity’s support services for young people and extend its geographical reach.

The Charity has just launched a holistic programme of support for young people not in education employment or training (NEETS) - Creating Positive Futures - funded by the London Development Agency.

“This is an important strategic appointment for BELS at a time when young people are facing huge challenges in this unpredictable economic environment”, says Matthew Hogg, BELS Chair. “The Board of Trustees are delighted that Michael has joined us as Chief Executive, to spearhead the next phase in the development of BELS for the benefit of the young people we support.”

Manning-Prior has over 20 years experience as a Chief Executive in the field of youth enterprise and business development, both nationally and internationally. Commenting on his appointment, Manning-Prior says:“Against the backdrop of increasing youth unemployment, BELS is committed to supporting young people and driving forward the development and implementation of innovative approaches to advancing their socio-economic well-being”. Manning-Prior was previously Chief Executive of Enterprise Development Worldwide and, before that, of Wandsworth Youth Enterprise.
Notes to Editors
Contact – Available for Interview
Michael Manning-Prior
Chief Executive
Business & Education London South (BELS)
Surrey House
Scarbrook Road
Surrey CRO 1QS

Telephone: 020 8726 0700
Mobile: 07792548352
Fax: 020 8726 0710

Background – Business & Education London South (BELS)

BELS is a registered charity based in Croydon, working with businesses, educational establishments and voluntary organisations across London, supporting young people as they prepare for adult and working life.

BELS focuses on the development of young peoples’ interpersonal, commercial and business skills, to empower them to develop their potential and be better prepared to proceed to further education or employment.

BELS achieves this by:

 Promoting and encouraging education business links to better enable young people to access employment;
 Working with schools and colleges to enhance the aspirations and improve the employment opportunities of young people;
 Researching both the labour market and the adequacy of existing education and training opportunities to identify key skills needs and other requirements for increasing employment opportunities;
 Devising, implementing and monitoring training and work experience programmes and opportunities.
Michael Manning-Prior
Michael Manning-Prior, BELS’ new CEO, was formerly CEO of Wandsworth Youth Enterprise and Enterprise Development Worldwide. With over 20 years direct service delivery experience, he has led on formulating and implementing strategies to assist organisations across the UK and internationally establish enterprise education programmes and business incubation centres.