South Shields bridal business takes on first recruit under Kickstart scheme to come back fighting after pandemic
Aimee Veitch, who runs Corsetry and Couture in the Rekendyke Industrial Estate, had seen her business flourishing – only to be hit by difficult times during the pandemic.
But with better times on the horizon, she wanted to come back fighting in 2021 and decided it was time to take on her first employee in the form of a ‘Kickstarter’.
Aimee got help from MINT Business Club, which helps businesses across the North East employ young people as part of a £2billion Government scheme.
The Kickstart Scheme – for which MINT is a Government-approved ‘gateway provider’ – aims to create high-quality, fully funded, six-month work placements for young people aged 16-24 who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long-term unemployment.
“Our Kickstarter, Sami is brilliant,” Aimee said.
"From the first day, he has fitted in so well and has transformed our social media communications.
“The initial six-month placement was very low risk to me and it was fully funded by the Government too.
"The support from MINT Business Club has been incredible.
"They have helped with all the contracts and things I was unsure about when taking on my first employee.
"This was a big leap for my business, and I’m delighted at how well it’s working out.”
MINT was formed by former North East teacher Nicola Jayne just over three years ago.
In the last three months, MINT has placed 25 young people into jobs across Tyne and Wear, Durham, and Northumberland, with Nicola saying that figure is due to double by the Autumn.
She said: “It’s just MINT to be helping so many 16-to-24-year-olds find exciting employment and training opportunities to kickstart them on their career paths.
"We’re also very excited to offer business owners the opportunity to grow their business with that much-needed extra pair of hands – without it costing them a penny.”
Nicola said MINT helps by doing all the paperwork and finding the ideal Kickstarter to match the needs of the business, as well as offering practical support to the employer throughout the placement and high-quality, vocational training to the Kickstarter.
Any limited company or community interest company with up to 50 employees can apply for the Kickstart support from MINT.