Prince's Trust to move into Jobcentre Plus

Starting in Hull, the charity will work in about 30 offices round the UK, offering information on volunteering and training to the unemployed

Jobcentre Plus
Jobcentre Plus

The Prince’s Trust is to open the first of about 30 volunteering desks in Jobcentre Plus offices in Hull next month.

The desks, which will help unemployed people into volunteering and training opportunities, will be staffed free of charge by the trust, as well as several other local and national charities.

Ginny Lunn, director of policy and development at the trust, said it did not want payment from the Department for Work and Pensions because the service was an extension of its work with unemployed young people.

"It’s a very informal system," she said. "They haven’t set us any targets. They provide the location and we provide the staff.

"Jobcentres improve their offering to their clients, and we get connected to more people who are interested in volunteering."

Lunn said the trust was keen to hear from local volunteering charities interested in providing services. "We’ll look at whether we expand the service to more locations after the first phase is complete," she said.

Mike Locke, senior policy and information manager at Volunteering England, said his organisation supported the initiative.

"We hope that this scheme will encourage more people to think about volunteering and signpost them to local organisations," he said. "We see this as an opportunity to break down the barriers between Jobcentre Plus and the voluntary sector."

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