By Óné Chappy & Andreas Mullings
A group of youngsters have taken over a shop in Leeds city centre to show the world they’re ready for careers in retail.
The pop-up store in Albion Street is open for just a month. In that time the young people hope to show customers, and potential employers, that they have what it takes to succeed in a competitive environment.
The project is the brainchild of the charities vInspired and the Retail Trust
Andreas Mullings spoke to some of the people involved ….
The pop-up shop which offers a range of prints and gifts from local artists and designers provides training and support to develop key business and retail skills for 16-25 year olds in Leeds.
Miss Isla Brown, Project coordinator for Retail Ready People in Leeds said: “The group of volunteers have opened a temporary pop-up shop in this empty space and the idea is that half the space is a shop selling local artists and designer’s products, all of which are sourced locally.”
The shop also features an art space, which offers live music and cultural events in collaboration with local organisations.
Any profit the shop makes goes back into the charities that are supporting the programme to train more volunteers.
So far, business has been going very well.
“We have far exceeded our original turn-over target, so that was great,” said Isla Brown.
The pop-up shop is only open for a month but the volunteers will continue to get advice and support on job opportunities thereafter.
Volunteers will get one-to-one consultation sessions which will help them find inspiration for their futures, with job searching skills and invitations to employment fares.
Volunteers taking part think the scheme is valuable and rewarding and would encourage other young people to take part.
- There’s more information on Retail Ready People on their Facebook page here