THE Henley Young Partnership has celebrated its first year.
Members and guests met at Phyllis Court Club to discuss their plans, including providing better links between schools and colleges and local businesses and community organisations.
Julie Perigo, who chairs the Henley Partnership, said: “The job market is highly competitive for young people and there are cutbacks on funding for work experience, so the partnership decided to see how we could offer support. We realised that a number of teaching staff do not live in the area and so cannot be expected to have the local connections, or the time, to seek out local businesses and community leaders.
“Yet they know the value of inviting them into their schools to give workshops, masterclasses and generally help students understand how to apply their class work to the real world.”
Over the last year a database had been compiled of local businesses, community groups, charities and individuals who are willing to offer their services. The young partnership has also acted as broker in matching mini-work experience projects with students at The Henley College and Gillotts School, which help them develop skills and experience for their CVs and job choices.
Deputy Mayor Stefan Gawrysiak, a former deputy head at Gillotts, said: “This is the sort of set-up everyone assumes is happening but which is actually rare. It is great to see the ways in which Henley’s local businesses, charities and schools are exploring mutually rewarding relationships.”