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Jobs campaign spreads across regional press

Two daily newspapers have launched campaigns to find 100 apprenticeships for young people in 100 days, on the heels of a similar successful initiative by another regional title.

The Grimsby Telegraph has started its own campaign to help fight back against the recession by helping young people into employment.

And The News, Portsmouth, has also launched a similar bid to find 100 apprenticeships within 100 days, in partnership with the National Apprenticeship Service.

The moves by the papers come after a successful campaign by the Bristol Evening Post, which was extended after the target was reached within hours, and one run jointly between The Citizen, Gloucester, and the Gloucestershire Echo, which has been shortlisted for an award.

Michelle Lalor, editor of the Grimsby Telegraph, said the paper’s bid to reduce unemployment for 19-24-year-olds was already being planned by colleagues when they noticed a similar campaign had been run by the Bristol title.

She said they had teamed up with Grimsby Institute college and North East Lincolnshire Council to create the campaign because of the lack of a skilled workforce and reasonably-paid jobs.

Michelle said: “The council here have already said as public spending cuts hit, this area will be affected more than some because of its reliance on public sector jobs.

“We are trying to encourage new skills here and young people learning a trade.”

She is sending letters out to 500 businesses asking them to take part and more than 80 young people have already registered an interest.

Meanwhile, The News also launched its apprenticeship campaign this week to get young people on the career ladder.

Mark Waldron, editor of The News, said: “This campaign is aimed at giving young people the prospect of a decent career in this tough economic climate.”

Earlier this month, the Bristol Evening Post hit its target of finding 100 firms to take part in its campaign, which was praised in Parliament for its success.

Evening Post editor Mike Norton said: “To have achieved the goal before the end of the 100-day campaign is an incredible achievement, not by us but by the businesses of Bristol.

“We are delighted that so many have chosen to give opportunities to young people in the area.”

The campaign run in Gloucester, in partnership with Gloucestershire College, was initially started in March and found 123 apprentices, while in August it was relaunched by the two newspapers to find placements for another batch of young people.

It has been shortlisted for a PRide Award by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations.