Kickstart Scheme

The Government’s Kickstart Scheme is a £2 billion fund designed to create hundreds of thousands of high quality six-month work placements for those aged 16 to 24 who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long term unemployment.

Young people are more likely to have been furloughed, with many working in sectors disproportionately hit by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The jobs created should give young people the opportunity to build their skills in the workplace and to gain experience to improve their chances of finding long-term work.

Job placements should support the participants to develop the skills and experience they need to find work after completing the scheme. Young people will be referred into the new roles through their Jobcentre Plus work coach with the first Kickstarts expected to begin at the start of November 2020.

The scheme is available to employers in England, Scotland and Wales that are looking to create new job placements for young people. Any organisation, regardless of size, can apply for funding. Applications must be for a minimum of 30 job placements and there is no cap on the number of places.

The roles must be a minimum of 25 hours per week, for six months, paid at least the National Minimum Wage for the employees’ age group. The roles should not require people to undertake extensive training before they begin the job placement.

The scheme will initially be open until December 2021, with the option of being extended.