Arvato has sponsored the Digital Advantage project in the Sefton region, in partnership with The White Room and Sefton Council. The scheme has enabled 12 vulnerable young people, aged 15-18 to take part in a ten-week programme to improve their employability and business understanding, through developing their confidence, skills and self-esteem.
Digital Advantage is a pop-up digital agency, run by The White Room who provide training and apprenticeships for companies working in or with digital media. The agency captures the energy of the digital revolution that is sweeping around the world to bring industry trainers, work experience and digital skills into colleges or schools. The initiative encourages students to get involved in live creative briefs, film making, a pitching process and work in a real office environment.
The participants in Sefton were also set the challenge to apply their newly learnt digital skills by coming up with an app for a product or service, and then develop the branding and promotional campaign for it. Collectively, the students brainstormed ideas and created a business plan, and with financial backing from Arvato their ideas came to life in form of a car valeting finder app called Wax on Wax off – ‘WoWo’.
Overall the programme saw impressive results with a number of participants securing full time work or apprenticeships, getting accepted into university and even starting their own business.
Leeann Doolin, Youth Work Manager at Sefton Council said, “We know the digital world offers so many opportunities and advantages. With that in mind, the team wanted to explore opportunities for young people around digital promotion and resilience and created a programme to enable young people to develop their creative skills, and digital knowledge and transfer these skills into a business idea.”
Peter Schriewersmann, Key Account Director, CRM Solutions, Arvato UK & Ireland, adds that, “My own placement with Arvato 13 years ago, showed me what a corporate career was all about – it inspired and motivated me. This is exactly what we wanted to do for young people through the Digital Advantage scheme in Sefton and the next initiative in Chesterfield. I want the young people involved to channel their entrepreneurial spirits into a mega trend such as digital as opposed to gangs or anti-social behaviour.”
To recognise the brilliant efforts of the students who got involved in the initiative, two of the participants who excelled on the programme were given work placements with Arvato to help kick-start their careers.
For further information about the Digital Advantage initiative please click here.