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Empowering Neath Port Talbot’s youth: Horizons Programme Pioneers Pathways to Employment

HORIZONS, part of the NPT Employability Youth Service helps young people aged 16 -18 that are not in education, employment or training to gain new skills, experiences and qualifications. Working in partnership with the ‘Down to Earth Project’ Horizons recently organised a course centred on young people developing confidence, communication and work skills which may help them into employment.

Neath Port Talbot residents Dafydd, Taylor and Jason, all aged 17, were encouraged to take part by Horizon Youth and Community Workers Dean Austin and Hannah Brier. Dafydd, Taylor and Jason learnt a variety of skills including outdoor cooking on a natural fire, identification of plants, working with hand and power tools, along with improving their communication skills. The participants of the course will also gain an accredited outcome.

Taylor said, “I have enjoyed this course, I feel like I am better at talking to people and I am feeling much more confident about the future”. Jason said, “I liked working with tools and photographing what we were doing the best”. Dafydd enjoyed the course and felt the routine of getting to the course was beneficial to him.  

The next course focuses on creating a video that portrays the participant’s vision of what Neath Port Talbot is like. The group will learn a variety of new skills, including story boarding, still and video photography, editing, choosing music and using a drone. 

Dean said, “When the Horizons programme started we had a number of young people who were socially isolated and not leaving their home, however through the support of the Horizons programme they are now participating in group activities where they are making friendships, gaining employability skills and qualifications.”  

Nia Jenkins, Neath Port Talbot Councillor and Cabinet Member for Education and Early Years commented, “The Horizons program exemplifies the transformative power of hands-on learning experiences in shaping the futures of our young people. By equipping them with essential skills and fostering their confidence, we’re not just preparing them for employment; we’re igniting their potential to thrive in the workforce and beyond. Initiatives like these are pivotal in our mission to create inclusive opportunities for all, ensuring that no talent goes untapped.”

For information on how Horizons or the Youth Service can help young people, please call 01639 763030 or search for ‘NPT Youth Service’ or ‘NPT Employability’ on social media accounts.

NPT Employability is a Neath Port Talbot Council service and is funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. 

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