Guidance and Support for Young People in the South West

Finding guidance and support as a young person can be a tricky task, made even more difficult for those living in rural areas – of which the South West has an abundance – where access to support is often thwarted by lack of transport or provision. CSW have been supporting young people for over 20 years and run a range of programmes, some of which are based within the community.

Our #Focus5 programme, which is funded by the European Social Fund and the National Lottery, through the Big Lottery Fund, works with young people in a location that suits them, our key workers often find themselves driving down country lanes, bypassing cattle, avoiding floods and getting muddy so they can meet the needs of our young people. This programme offers support to those young people that are disconnected from education and need someone to sit down and gently discuss their choices, identifying where they can go, they also broker access to other provision – including trial days and support whilst in provision. In a recent survey of those who are working with #Focus5, it was noted that one of the best things about the project is the availability of key workers to support young people in the community.

Another CSW led project is Ambitions, a partnership project funded by the European Social Fund.  The project will enhance the provision of careers education, information, advice and guidance in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, including supporting employers to offer a wider range of opportunities to people with special educational needs and disability; support for young people in vulnerable groups; and helping young people to build resilience. Supporting economically inactive and unemployed 15 – 24 year olds Ambitions will support young people to explore their skills and career aspirations through a number of activities enabling them to progress into education, employment or training. By having an extensive partnership model Ambitions will be able to be delivered flexibly throughout the county which will encourage young people to join and feel comfortable whilst gaining a wide range of support.

Through activity with Local Authorities across the peninsula, CSW offer a targeted service to all young people with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) and those within designated vulnerable groups, or those at risk of NEET (not in education, employment or training). This ‘Transitions’ service works individually with young people, supporting them with their choices, preparation and includes an element of personal guidance. This service also works with those young people that are NEET, our Advisers are able to meet young people in community locations that are suitable and support them to find their path to education or employment that fits their needs.

For more information on these programmes, and for details on how to refer a young person, please visit


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