People power: transforming young lives with The Prince’s Trust

Canoeing and raft-building. Interview prep and confidence-boosting skills. These might seem like polar opposites, but they share one very royal connection: they’ve all been part of The Prince’s Trust next-generation inspiration drive to increase confidence and skills.

Over the past five years, as part of our commitment to citizenship and supporting people into employment, Barclaycard has partnered with the charity to empower young people – often those who’ve experienced homelessness or are leaving the care system – to help turn their lives around.

It’s in our DNA

Take The Prince’s Trust Team programme as an example. It offers young people work experience, community projects, as well as presentation workshops, CV and interview skills. The 12-week course teaches the key skills they need so they feel ready to take that next step – as well as giving participants a confidence boost.

Teamwork makes the dream work

As a passionate supporter of the Team programme, we understand the way we can contribute by sharing our skills and giving our time. The programmes around the country supports 12 - 15 young people, aged between 16 and 25-years-old, to build their job skills, teamwork abilities and encourages to stretch themselves through new challenges, like community projects and giving a presentation at the end of the programme.

Whether getting back into education, starting their first job, or understanding what they’re passionate about, The Prince’s Trust enables participants to make it possible – with involvement and support from Barclaycard colleagues.

In 2017, more than 700 colleagues supported more than 30 of The Prince’s Trust Team programmes. Between them, they’ve dedicated over 2,600 hours to helping more than 400 young people across the UK. 

Invaluable insight

When it comes to helping young people succeed in the business world, The Prince’s Trust need look no further than our own colleagues and their industry know-how. By volunteering with The Trust, colleagues pass on invaluable skills that help give young people a fresh start – and a hopeful future.

From CV support and interview practice, to one-to-one mentoring and Barclaycard-hosted skills workshops, our colleagues are really pulling their weight when it comes to helping young people get job-ready. And it goes without saying, the programme is a phenomenal success. In fact, after they finish the programme, over 80% of the young people move on to further education, training, employment and beyond. 

New opportunities to grow

Robert took part in this year’s Prince’s Trust Team programme and felt good about being treated as an individual. He says, “When you step into The Prince’s Trust, they give you the freedom to be your own person – all while being able to learn how to grow up and be an adult.

“Off the back of the whole experience of The Prince’s Trust, with the CVs and the interview process and everything else, I managed to secure a job with Barclays Partner Finance, which was brilliant!”

Trying anything new can be scary but it’s usually worth it, as Ayodeji, another Prince’s Trust Team participant, explains: “From the first day, I got along well with my team – that really helped me come out of my shell.” So what would Ayodeji’s tip be for young people thinking of taking part in the Team programme? “It might be daunting at the start but just persevere through because it’s really fun and nice experience.” 

Making a difference

Making that personal connection is really important. Abigail Evans, Senior Corporate Partnerships Manager at The Prince’s Trust, has seen it first hand: “All the volunteers are open to sharing their skills as well as their personal experiences, which is vital in raising the self-belief of young people who may be facing significant barriers to success.”

Make time to surprise yourself

But it’s not just the young people who start to think differently on the programme, as Monika, a Barclaycard colleague volunteer explains: “What surprised me was the fact that we were learning too – the volunteers. It’s not just a learning journey for the young people, but it’s a learning journey for us as well.”

For two years running, Barclaycard has won The Prince’s Trust Service to Young People award, which recognises the volunteering contribution that colleagues make. And citizenship is more than just doing good things for other people, as Monika found out: “I would encourage others to get involved with the programme because it really pushes your boundaries. Don’t hesitate and don’t think that you can’t do something, because you’ll be really surprised!”

To find out more about The Prince’s Trust, visit www.princes-trust.org.uk.