Dame Kelly Holmes and Employment Minister Priti Patel have launched a new campaign encouraging businesses to Go The Extra Mile to support young people facing disadvantage to gain and sustain employment.

Go The Extra Mile calls on businesses to create conditions where young people can thrive in the workplace.

The campaign’s research provides clear steps explaining how organisations can alter existing practices to enable young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to flourish.

Speaking at an event with business leaders at The Shard in London, The Rt Hon Priti Patel MP, said: “Getting young people into meaningful employment and helping them to realise their true potential is a key priority for me.

“Businesses have a vital role to play, and I’m delighted to join Dame Kelly Holmes to encourage more industry leaders to look past people’s backgrounds and see if they can offer young people that important first step onto the career ladder — while reaping the rewards of a more diverse workforce.”

Dame Kelly Holmes, Founder and President at Dame Kelly Holmes Trust, added: “Our programmes have been highly successful over the past eight years at equipping young people with the attitudes and behaviours needed to lead positive lives, including becoming valuable long-term employees.

“We now need businesses – ranging from large corporations right down to micro businesses – to realise the potential of young people and enable them to achieve career success, whilst also benefiting themselves.”


What is Go The Extra Mile?

Go The Extra Mile is about creating the conditions for young people facing disadvantage to thrive. Dame Kelly Holmes Trust is calling on employers to:

  • Find ways to support young people to gain and sustain employment by following six key steps.
  • Realise the potential of young people facing disadvantage, who have the attitudes and capabilities required to be successful.

What are young people saying?

  • The majority of young people surveyed identified securing employment as the most important issue in their life.
  • Over half of respondents stated that not having enough work experience was the biggest challenge they faced.

Other barriers to employment identified, included:

  • A lack of readily available comprehensive careers advice.
  • Limited information about what job opportunities are available.

What is the solution?

The campaign’s research provided the following best practice recommendations for employers:

  • Provide structured work experience with clear objectives.
  • Provide inductions for staff working with young people.
  • Develop feedback practices that support, encourage and empower young people.
  • Develop application processes that are more accessible to young people and recruit on attitudes and behaviours.
  • Engage with external partners to work with the young people pre-application.
  • Deliver workshops on interview skills and career guidance to young people.


Who are Dame Kelly Holmes Trust?

Dame Kelly Holmes Trust deliver transformational mentoring programmes to young people facing disadvantage led by world class athletes. These programmes help young people realise the five key attitudes of focus, confidence, determination, resilience, motivation needed to make positive life choices.

Get Involved

By 2020 Dame Kelly Holmes Trust will deliver its transformational mentoring programmes to 70,000 young people facing disadvantage across every area of the UK.

Businesses are being encouraged to support the campaign and Go The Extra Mile by becoming a partner of Dame Kelly Holmes Trust: www.damekellyholmestrust.org/gtem.