Southern, in partnership with The Prince’s Trust, runs Get into Railways, a programme for young people from difficult backgrounds. 2019 marks the 5th anniversary of this special partnership and has generated £1.6 million of social benefit to UK society over the last five years.
The programme has so far helped 182 18-25 years old’s gain skills and work experience. With 164 of these young people completing the course since the start of the partnership in 2014, 77% have secured sustainable, permanent jobs in the GTR network which covers Thameslink, Great Northern, Southern and Gatwick Express.
The 18-25 year olds selected for the programme receive free four-week and two-day courses at a training centre on our network. Their time is split between the training centre and a two-week work placement at one of our stations. The programme focuses on practical skills development and the chance to build a strong CV. The Prince's Trust helps young people become work- ready by developing their skills and confidence. Participants also get to experience a number of mock interviews with our staff.
The Social Impact Report marking the fifth anniversary can be downloaded here.
The report also announces that the programme, which takes an innovative and inclusive approach to training and employment, is set to be extended for two further years with a commitment to training at least 70 more young people.
For more information about the work that the Prince's Trust does please visit the Prince's Trust website.
Najla Almutairi, 27, is a Station Assistant based at London Victoria.
Najla arrived in the UK from Saudi Arabia aged 16 with her mum. Najla gained a degree in architecture, but during her studies her mother fell seriously ill. After graduating, Najla spent a year and a half in part-time work while caring for her mum and younger siblings but sought a better position to support her family. It was a daunting time as Najla didn’t know where to start and didn’t have a CV. Eventually she found the Prince’s Trust, who gave careers guidance and put her on the Get Into Railways programme in partnership with Govia Thameslink Railway.
Following a work placement, she landed a job as a Station Assistant and was given a supportive mentor. Najla, who is now giving back by acting as a Young Ambassador for the Prince’s Trust, said: “I enjoy every day working on the railway. I love being part of our team and assisting passengers. My ambition is to progress into a management role and to develop leadership qualities to enable me to inspire and support more young people.”