The Achievement Service

We are the Achievement Service and we are available to support you if you are a Nottinghamshire looked after young person aged 16-17-yearsold, or an 18-24-year-old care leaver. We want you to be the best you can be and so our aim is to help you to aspire and achieve in whatever career path you choose to take. Whether that’s through education and studying in college, going to university, doing an apprenticeship, on-the-job-training or succeeding in the world of work. The Achievement Service is committed to helping you make the most of every opportunity and can offer you support, advice and guidance until your 25th birthday.

We are a team of achievement advisers who can work with your social worker (if you are looked after), your personal adviser, the 21Plus Service (if you are 21-24-years-old) and lots of other professionals to help you plan your journey in employment, education and/or training. We can be part of your Pathway Plan, Personal Education Plan or complete an Employability Assessment so together we can explore what opportunities are out there and how we can help with the support you might need.

We work closely with lots of partner agencies and organisations so together we can improve the opportunities for you in employment,

education and training. We see this as an extension of the Local Offer for Care Leavers and so we have called this our ‘Achievement Offer’.

You can download the Achievement Offer here:










Apprenticeships combine practical on-the-job training with study, so you will earn a wage, gain job-specific skills and study things related to your role. Apprenticeships can be a great way to be recognised in an organisation and so we are working within our partners to identify lots of apprenticeship opportunities for care leavers, as well as ones with Nottinghamshire County Council. If you meet the required criteria to start an apprenticeship then Futures can help find the right apprenticeship for you, then support you throughout so that you can gain employment when you successfully complete the full apprenticeship. If you don’t quite meet the required criteria to start an apprenticeship, then we will work with you to develop your skills and qualifications so you can still follow this pathway.

Our offer:

  • Access to Nottinghamshire care leaver apprenticeships
  • Access to national apprenticeships
  • Top-up your wage to match the National Living Wage whilst you complete your apprenticeship (if
  • living independently)
  • Assistance with work-related benefits, including possible child care costs if you are a parent/carer
  • Supporting you with any issues with your Right to Work in an apprenticeship if you identify as not being a UK Citizen
  • Support from Futures in preparing for and completing your apprenticeship
  • Additional support to help you gain employment once you’ve successfully completed your full apprenticeship
Careers Guidance

Careers Guidance

If you’re unsure about which future career is right for you and don’t know which route is right for you, careers guidance will help you explore your best options. Working with Futures we will be able to link you with a professional careers adviser to help you explore what is out there and then work with your personal adviser and the Achievement Service to identify how you can achieve your ambitions. It’s okay not to know what you want to do as a career, but this support can help you to identify the best opportunities and choices for you to succeed in your future career.

Our offer:

  • Access to careers guidance and planning
  • Access to the National Careers Service
  • Regular Pathway Plans, Personal Education Plans and Employability Assessments
  • Access to careers opportunities and events via the Notts Next Steps App
  • Virtual and physical drop-in sessions and career-focused skills sessions
  • Helping you to prepare your future career plan at your own pace
Higher Education

Higher Education

Going to university or exploring other higher education opportunities can sometimes be worrying. We will help you to explore your options so that you have the best start. Once you start your course, your personal adviser will continue to support you including accommodation, finance and finding the right course for you.

Throughout your course, we will support you to see how you are getting on and to link you with the care leaver support within your university.

Our offer:

  • Help you identify and choose which university is right for you and
  • support you to attend open days (and go with you if you want us to).
  • We can also link you to an academic mentor
  • Help with your UCAS application
  • Support you to plan your finances and access student finance, loans and bursaries including child care costs if you are a parent/carer
  • Plan for your accommodation during term time and during university holidays to give you peace of mind (including assistance with paying for some of this accommodation)
  • Access up to £2,000 as a Care Leaver Higher Education Bursary
  • Identify and pay for any specialist equipment or support you may need within your course
  • Assist you with finding a work placement or work experience opportunities if these are required as part of your course
  • Work with your university to ensure you have the best support and opportunities throughout your higher education experience
  • Explore your post-graduate opportunities once you have completed your chosen course


We continue to work with our partners in industry to explore opportunities for you in accessing the world of work. We have a dedicated business engagement achievement adviser who will liaise with local and regional industries to explore work taster days, apprenticeship or employment vacancies, and help make sure you can access all the opportunities within the world of work. We also link with our Chamber of Commerce across Derbyshire, Derby City, Nottinghamshire and Nottingham City (D2N2) to widen your choices around your future employment plans within the region.

Our offer:

  • A dedicated Business Engagement Achievement Adviser to continue developing and maintaining links with industry professionals
  • A database of employers and opportunities for you in Nottinghamshire and across the region
  • Regular e-newsletter to industry professionals, sharing your success stories and exploring opportunities and ways in which we can continue working together to improve outcomes for you
  • Attendance at industry events to promote our Achievement Service and explore how we can keep working together to benefit each other
  • Arrange work-taster days in various work-place settings to help you experience what it is like to work in that industry


Sometimes your experience in education may have been positive, but other times there may be a few bumps on your journey to achieve the qualifications and skills you require for your chosen employment or future education. Whatever the circumstances, we will work with you to identify what educational courses will help you on your journey into the world of work and support you to achieve this.

Our offer:

  • Your social worker will work with our Virtual School to identify your plans for Post-16 and then use our Employability Assessment Personal Education Plan (EAPEP) to review these plans three times a year until your 18th birthday.
  • Explore what options are out there for you in our local colleges and educational providers as part of your lifelong learning
  • Help you identify and choose which educational course is right for you, and support you to attend open days (and come with you if you want us to)
  • We will work with your educational provider or college to ensure you have the best support and opportunities
  • Build on and help to develop your key Maths and English qualifications and skills as a stepping stone into employment, further or higher education or an apprenticeship
  • Support you to plan your finances and access any college bursaries or financial support for specialist equipment, clothing or resources relevant to your chosen course including child care costs if you are a parent/carer
  • Support you to access specialist or required courses as part of your personal development if you are already in employment or training
  • Support you to access English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) provision if you require this


Volunteering gives you the chance to give something back to the community and make a difference to the people around you, but it will also provide an opportunity for you to develop new skills or build on existing experience and knowledge. We link with organisations such as Inspire & Achieve Foundation and The Prince’s Trust to help identify what volunteering opportunities are available to you and how we can help support you practically with any volunteering you may wish to participate in.

Our offer:

  • Access to our own Nottinghamshire County Council Volunteering Scheme
  • Access to volunteering opportunities through Inspire & Achieve Foundation, The Prince’s Trust or other national and regional voluntary organisations
  • Links with local volunteer centres and opportunities around Nottinghamshire
  • Volunteering opportunities advertised via our Notts Next Steps App
  • We may be able to help with financial support to assist you getting to and from your volunteering role including child care costs if you are a parent/carer
  • Help identify and fund any specific courses or practical equipment or clothing you may need in order to help you in your volunteering role
  • Help identify your transferrable skills you have gained from your experience whilst volunteering when applying for paid work and career opportunities


We want you to have the best experiences you can to help you to aspire and achieve in education and the world of work. This includes increasing your understanding of what it is like being employed in various industry settings, through taster days or through work experience. You can also help other young people by sharing your experiences of employment and education and allow them to benefit from your knowledge.

Our offer:

  • Access to work taster days
  • Opportunities with businesses and organisations including Nottinghamshire County Council in providing work experience opportunities for you
  • Free access to online work experience within Nottinghamshire County Council
  • We may be able to help with financial support to assist you getting to and from your work experience placement, clothing requirements or specialist equipment including child care costs if you are a parent/ carer
  • Access to ‘Care2Work’ for those aged 16-17 years who are not in employment, education and training to increase your employability, gain confidence and access to a work experience placement
  • Share your experiences with other young people via our Achievement Service or be part of an interview panel to recruit to our Children Looked After and Leaving Care Service


A mentor is an individual who can share their knowledge, experience, and advice to help you build your confidence and guide you through your journey within the world of work. For those applying or thinking of going to study at university we have links with Nottingham Trent University to connect you with an academic mentor to help you through that process and answer any questions you may have. You can also help other young people by sharing your experiences of education and employment with them.

Our offer:

  • Give you access to the Inspire & Achieve Foundation mentoring programme
  • Support to engage with a DWP work coach and access mentoring circles if you are claiming Universal Credit or seeking employment
  • Access via Nottingham Trent University to an academic mentor if you are applying for or thinking of going to university
  • We may be able to offer some financial support for travelling to and from any mentoring sessions and come with you on your initial meeting if you want us to
  • General support and advice to the mentors around care leaver experiences
  • Opportunity to be a peer mentor and work alongside the Achievement Service to speak with other young people (face-to-face, pre-recorded or virtually)


Sometimes you may wish to enter the world of work straight from school, and then other times you may need to achieve more skills and qualifications first or you might be restricted with what employment you can do. Whichever way your employment path may take you, we can offer support and advice.

Our offer:

  • We may be able to offer some financial support with work clothing, equipment or initial travel expenses to and from your work
  • Help with seeking employment and linking with our Care Leaver Contacts within Job Centre Plus (DWP) about other employment opportunities and support
  • Vacancies and employment opportunities available via our Notts Next Steps App
  • Access to the Kickstart Scheme and support to explore and sustain employment opportunities if you are unemployed and receiving Universal Credit
  • Help with claiming appropriate work-related funds or benefits including child care costs if you are a parent/carer
  • Supporting you with any issues around your Right to Work if you identify as not being a UK Citizen
  • Guaranteed job interview for any Nottinghamshire care leaver applying for and meeting the basic job description criteria for a vacancy within Nottinghamshire County Council
New Skills

New Skills

Everything you do in life can help develop your skills, which can then be transferred into your current or future employment, but sometimes you might need a helping hand. In Nottinghamshire, our young people achieve amazing things every day and so it’s important we celebrate your success, whether that is graduating from university, completing some work experience, achieving in education, gaining new employment or getting short-listed for an interview.

Our offer:

  • E-learning sessions with REED employment agency learning skills around CV writing, interview techniques and increasing your employability
  • Drop-in skills sessions and advice with our achievement advisers and partner organisations
  • Access to DWP work preparation and skills days
  • Links with industry professionals with “What It’s Like…” sessions exploring different career pathways with people who do that job
  • Free access to courses on how to manage your money and financial awareness
  • Free access to Nottinghamshire County Council’s Induction to the Workforce Online Training Modules
  • Celebrating your successes with you (which may include financial support around celebration events such as graduation gown hire and achievement ceremonies)


A traineeship is a skills-development which includes a work placement (lasting six weeks up to 12 months) for young people aged 16-24 who are unemployed and who do not have much work experience. You might also wish to do some further training and development whilst in employment which we may be able to assist with.

Our offer:

  • Support to identify or access to traineeships, including those with Inspire Culture and Learning organisation
  • If you are not quite ready for a traineeship, we can help you to find a study programme to develop your skills and knowledge
  • We may be able to offer some financial support with work clothing, equipment, initial travel expenses and lunch allowance whilst in your traineeship or study programme
  • We may be able to help with financial and practical support to identify training courses which will help you in your job
  • We may also be able to help with financial support as part of your ongoing professional development plan within your job


Page last reviewed: 06/09/2022

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