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Vaughan Gething MS, Minister for Economy

First published:
15 March 2024
Last updated:

I have today published the Young Person’s Guarantee  Annual Report 2023 alongside the Young Person’s Guarantee – National Conversation Phase 2 and 3 Report and the Welsh Government’s response for participants.

The Young Person’s Guarantee is a Programme for Government commitment, which was launched in November 2021. It aims to provide young people aged 16 to 24 in Wales with an ongoing offer of support to gain a place in education or training, find a job or become self- employed.

The annual report notes the Welsh Government is making strong progress in delivering its commitment with more than 27,000 young people starting on employability and skills programmes alone, since the launch of the guarantee.

More than 5,000 young people have progressed into employment; more than 400 have started their own business and more than 12,700 have started apprenticeships, according to provisional figures. 

Furthermore, 1,100 young people have taken part in 64 Skills Competitions Wales events during 2023. The competitors are continuously raising their own standards and showcasing their drive and determination to succeed in their sector, with 17 invited to join the UK squad for the WorldSkills finals to be held in Lyon this September.

The Young Person’s Guarantee – National Conversation exercise involved a series of surveys and focus groups and continued phase one work that started in 2022. Young people have faced an extraordinary set of circumstances in recent years, with experiences that most of us have never had to contend with at such a young age, including a global pandemic. Many feel concerned their career and wellbeing prospects will never recover from the pandemic and cost-of-living crisis, which is why the Young Person’s Guarantee has been a major priority for the Welsh Government. 

Phases two and three in 2023 focused on exploring further the barriers to education, employment and training that young people now face. The report is published alongside our response for participants, which sets out how we have listened to young people and responded to their feedback. This includes, supporting Careers Wales to provide tailored work experience placements for up to 500 learners who have struggled to return to education following the pandemic; doubling the training allowance for Jobs Growth Wales+; being the first country in the UK to increase the Education Maintenance Allowance; and providing £3m to further education colleges and local authority sixth forms for transition funding for activities including college taster days, masterclasses, interactive workshops and summer programmes.

As announced on 21 February, I have allocated an additional £2.5m to increase provision of Jobs Growth Wales+ across Wales for the remainder of the financial year.

I have also secured an extra allocation of £10m in the Welsh Government Budget 2024-25 to strengthen key elements of the Young Person’s Guarantee and other commitments across apprenticeships and employability programmes.

Young people and their skills will determine the economy of today and tomorrow. We are committed to investing in their ambition and wellbeing in the face of the most challenging financial climate in the devolution era.