A CHARITY which supports young people in Basingstoke and Deane has been given a financial boost to continue its work.

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council has granted £40,000 to the Basingstoke Consortium to help to give young people across the borough employment opportunities.

The grant will be spread across a year with a view to further funding over the following four years, and is designed to help the Consortium link employers with education providers.

Funds granted by the borough council will support the Consortium’s work to create opportunities for young people to learn more about the key developing business sectors in Basingstoke, to help shape their future career choices and give them an understanding of how their learning at school impacts on the world of work.

As previously reported in The Gazette, the consortium was under threat of closure last year citing financial uncertainty, but the charity was thrown a lifeline when it merged with fellow education business partnership EBP South just before Christmas last year.

Cath Longhurst, Basingstoke Consortium chief executive officer, said: “It is great that the council is investing in the future generation of employees.

“Our strong links with schools and businesses mean that this grant will enable us to maintain and grow the level of interaction between the local economy and education.”

The grant was awarded by the borough council following proposals outlining how Basingstoke Consortium, working together with employers, education providers and young people, would support key priorities for the borough.

Cabinet member for safety and community safety at the borough council, Councillor Simon Bound added: “These Consortium projects will support young people’s transition from primary to secondary education and onto post-16 education.

“Our funding will enable the development of programmes to build young people’s ‘employability’ as they progress through education and, working with businesses and other key partners, offer new opportunities for young people to develop their entrepreneurial and digital skills.

“This will help them achieve their full potential and encourage them to develop skills needed by local employers in key growth areas for the borough’s economy.”