Bus brings help on the jobs front

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Young people are getting a new bus service in Mid Sussex to bring them advice on employment and training.

The service will focus on youngsters living in Bentswood at Haywards Heath, Denham Road at Burgess Hill, Hurstpierpoint and East Grinstead.

Housing provider Affinity Sutton, which has nearly 5,000 homes in Mid Sussex, has renewed its partnership with national charity Action for Children to provide the mobile outreach service.

The bus will act as a one-stop-shop to complement other services in the area signposting young people to the relevant services around employment, education and training.

A specially-trained team will also be on hand to offer information and guidance on a range of lifestyle topics and provide workshops.

Last year, Affinity signed an agreement with Action in Rural Sussex’s Your Bus Your Call in a mobile outreach service which delivers advice and support sessions to young people aged 13 to 24. This new partnership will complement this service.

Olwyn AveryJones, project manager for Action for Children, said: “Streetmate is an inspirational outreach project that takes information and engagement with young people into the heart of their community. The informal and relaxed atmosphere creates an open environment for young people to discuss issues that affect them.

“The strong and long-standing partnership between Action for Children’s Streetmate and Affinity Sutton has had a positive impact on the lives of young people in communities it serves.”

Nicky Dodds, neighbourhood investment officer for Affinity Sutton, said: “This service will target key Affinity Sutton neighbourhoods offering much-needed support to our younger residents. The service will operate initially in two areas, Bentswood and Denham Road by early September 2012. Through consultation work with young people and others the service will then extend to cover the other two areas.”

For more information please contact the Streetmate team for further information. Young people and families are welcome to call 01444 440242.