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17 May, 2017 - 13:44 By Kate Sweeney

Fresh funding boosts employment prospects for youngsters in Cambridge

Anne Bailey

An additional £82,000 is being invested in Cambridge to help young people move from education into work.

Form the Future CIC ramped up its war chest thanks to donations from a raft of Cambridge companies, parents, teachers and volunteers. It had a two-week window to raise £7.5k to unlock a £75k fund and hit the target.

Form the Future CIC is a social enterprise that connects schools and businesses to help young people prepare for their future careers. It delivers Signpost2Skills on behalf of the GCGP LEP and the Greater Cambridge City Deal and manages Cambridge LaunchPad – a STEM outreach programme. 

With this additional £82k to invest in activities in the Cambridge area over the next 18 months, Form the Future is able to provide more support with work experience, enterprise challenge days and help with the essential skills that young people need to become job-ready.

Co-founder Michaela Eschbach said: “We’d like to thank everyone who has donated as well as those who have helped spread the word. The Form the Future community is what makes us strong and without our supporters we would not be able to do everything we do.” 

Co-founder Anne Bailey revealed the breadth of support from community and corporate players.

She said: “We had donations from teachers, parents and volunteers who take part in our mentoring and events programmes, as well as lots of heart-warming messages of support for our work.

“But what made it possible to achieve our goal in such a short space of time was the very generous pledges from corporate supporters – A14, ARM, AstraZeneca, Cambridge BID, Cambridge University Press, Cofinitive, CRFS Ltd, Eastern Academic Health Science Network, Marshall, Mott MacDonald, Mundipharma and RK Print. We owe a debt of gratitude to everyone who is helping create a better future for young people in our city.”

Senior business development manager, Andy Rice, said the current priority was to help schools find work experience placements for their year 10’s (aged 15).

“This is such an important life-experience for them and a very valuable part of their pathway to employment we want to ensure that every student has the opportunity to have this experience,” he explained. 

“We are also starting to think about our mentoring recruitment for the school year beginning in September. If you have the time and inclination to make a deep and meaningful difference in a young person’s life- please get in touch- training is provided.”

To find out more about the work of Form the Future and to get involved, visit

• PHOTOGRAPH: Anne Bailey (left) and Michaela Eschbach of Form the Future

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