We are delighted to have welcomed our first Kickstart Scheme placement, 24-year-old Jack Price (pictured), who has begun a six-month Runner placement at The Bottle Yard Studios, marking the first Bristol City Council position to be filled under the scheme.
The Kickstart Scheme, which has been underway since September, is a £2 billion UK-wide government initiative aimed at helping young people, who have been among the hardest hit by the economic impact of the pandemic, onto the first rung of their career ladder. It provides funding to create six-month job placements for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit, covering 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week as well as National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions.
Laura Aviles, Senior Bristol Film Manager, said: “When we heard about the Kickstart Scheme we were quick to express our interest in getting involved to the Bristol City Council gateway. We’re delighted to be helping Jack into the TV and film industry through his placement at The Bottle Yard Studios, he has already proven himself to be an extremely valuable addition to our team. We hope to be able to offer another placement later in the year.”
Jane Taylor, Bristol City Council’s Head of Service (Employment Skills and Learning) says: ”We are delighted to see that Jack is underway with his Bristol Kickstart work placement at The Bottle Yard Studios. This is a valuable scheme and we want employers to make the most of the opportunity and to help support Bristol’s economic recovery. We’re keen to hear from employers that would like to take part, especially those who are committed to diversity and inclusion and can offer placements for young Bristol people facing the greatest risks and challenges, including young people in South Bristol and the inner city.”
24-year-old Jack from Brislington studied at St Brendan’s Sixth Form College before achieving a UAL Level 4 Diploma in Art & Design from Weston College and moving on to study a BA (Hons) Animation Production degree at Arts University Bournemouth. After graduating in 2019, Jack returned to Bristol and worked in hospitality before gaining short term freelance work as a Junior Animator with Bristol animation studio A Productions. However, he struggled to find further work during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Jack says: “Animation was one part of the creative industries where people could continue to work from home during lockdown, so the animation job market became pretty saturated. I think that made it harder for me to find work as I was only just starting out in my career. When I went on to Universal Credit, my Work Coach told me about the Kickstarter Scheme. I applied for the Bottle Yard Studios placement and was really pleased when I found out that I’d been selected.
“My background in animation means I’m familiar with many of the pre-production stages like visual art, design, illustration and storyboarding. Being at The Bottle Yard means that I’m now able to get an insight into different aspects of the production stage, as it’s going on all around me. I’m looking forward to getting as much experience as I can between now and November, making new connections with TV and film industry contacts that will help me move forward.”
In its role as Kickstart gateway, Bristol City Council supported The Bottle Yard Studios’ application to the scheme, administers funds from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), and provides wrap-around employability support and training to help young people settle into the world of work and prepare for the next step beyond the Kickstart programme, this can include applying for jobs, CV writing, interview skills, leadership and teamwork. Bristol City Council also supports employers to explore development of apprenticeships and other workforce development options.
Young people interested in applying for a Kickstart placement should contact their DWP work coach who can provide information about the wide variety of roles that are available. Employment support is also available through the new Ways2Work One Front Door Service which offers support for residents of Bristol to access employment, training and advice services. The service can be accessed via the website – www.onefrontdoor.org.uk – or call 0117 922 3440.