A Telford recruitment expert has taken part in a prestigious event to celebrate the success of a national youth employment initiative.
Maria Sandford, who runs Prince Personnel in Grosvenor House, Central Park, attended a reception at the House of Lords for supporters of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation's Youth Employment Charter.
More than 200 recruitment businesses have signed up to the charter over the last three years and have helped over 20,000 young jobseekers take their first step into the jobs market.
"I was incredibly honoured to be invited to such a fantastic event, and it was a wonderful opportunity to meet with other specialists in the recruitment industry to share our opinions and experiences," said Maria.
"There are around one million 16-24-year-olds out of work and not in education or training, and it's an issue that has to be top of our industry's agenda if we're going to make a positive difference to the UK economy and to people's lives."
Also at the event were Baroness Prosser (chair of the REC's Youth Employment Taskforce), Minister for SKills and Enterprise Matthew Hancock, and Lord Wallace of Tankerness.
Chief executive of the REC, Kevin Green, said: "Recruiters have played a key role in supporting young people in taking their first steps into the jobs market.
"On the one hand, we have nearly one million young people still not in education, employment or training, and on the other, businesses are struggling to find the talent and skills they need to grow as the economy improves.
"I'm looking forward to exploring and then implementing the ideas and suggestions that came out of the reception."
Maria said the team at Prince Personnel were fully committed to supporting the charter and had spent the last decade working with local companies to match them with the very best candidates.
"We pride ourselves on doing everything possible to ensure a successful placement and by working together with other professionals in our industry, we believe we can help even more young people into sustainable jobs and high quality training to give them a more positive and productive future."