Kickstart Scheme

The Coronavirus pandemic has caused disruption to many businesses and individuals, who, through no fault of their own, find themselves without meaningful employment.

The Kickstart Scheme (external link) is a £2 billion fund to create hundreds of thousands of high quality 6-month work placements across the country for young people aged 16-24 in receipt of Universal Credit.

Employers of all sizes can apply for funding which covers:

  • 100% of the National Minimum Wage (or the National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant) for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months
  • Associated employer National Insurance contributions
  • Employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions
  • Employers can spread the start date of the job placements up until the end of December 2021.

Job placements need to be new roles and support young people to develop their skills and experience.

In addition to businesses being able to access a large pool of young people with potential, ready for an opportunity. Kickstart placements through the West Lancashire Borough Councils scheme can also access a support and training package to compliment the experience of the young recruit during their placement.


West Lancashire Borough Council has now established itself as a Gateway Organisation to coordinate placements (of less than 30 vacancies) through the scheme on behalf of local businesses and employers.

If you're interested in hearing more about the Kickstart scheme in West Lancashire, email

If your company has more than 30 vacancies you can apply via directly through the DWP website (external link).