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“This is a tremendous opportunity for young people to gain valuable experience in an area they are interested in. I would urge as many young people as possible to take up this opportunity to make a difference to children and young people’s services – it’s a great way to gain training and a recognised qualification.”The opportunity comes as part of V Talent Year, which has seen £10.5m shared out among 33 successful local authorities across the country. Last year, Staffordshire County Council recruited 15 young people who all successfully completed the volunteering programme, earning valuable qualifications in the process. Volunteers will lend their skills to various children’s services provided by the council including youth work, nursery and play work, supporting looked after children and those with special educational needs and disabilities in classrooms. Older volunteers will also help in youth offending services, substance misuse work and education welfare services. Stacey Fricker, 21, a volunteer who has completed a year’s placement with Cannock Connexions Centre and Blakeways Youth Centre, said:
“VTalent is a wonderful opportunity which lets you achieve great things. If you have the drive for it and are dedicated I’d grab it with both hands. It has given me a new outlook and sent me in a new directions. I am looking forward to life’s adventures and I will definitely stay in touch with everyone I have met on my year’s journey on V Talent.”Applications are available from www.staffordshire.gov.uk/jobs. For information on how to apply, contact Lisa Blairs, V Talent Supervisor, on 01782 297461 or 07817 774681. Deadline for completed applications is February 28.