London City launches scheme to help local communities recover from COVID-19

The London City Helpers programme will help tackle unemployment and provide support to those from disadvantaged backgrounds

London City Airport has launched the ‘London City Helpers’ programme, which aims to help communities in the East of the capital recover from the effects of COVID-19.

The programme initiated by the airport and delivered in partnership with the East London Business Alliance (ELBA) and local partners, will work with the community to tackle unemployment and addresses inequality.

It also aims to support disadvantaged young people whilst supporting the mental health and wellbeing of the residents across East London.

London City Airport
Photo London City Airport 

A mentoring scheme specifically designed for this purpose is set to launch in the near future. Working in partnership with 15BillionEBP – a charity dedicated to shaping the future of young people – volunteers from the airport will help mentor Newham school students who appear at risk of leaving education, employment or training due to the pandemic.

Activities will be conducted in the form of virtual workshops and other engaging events to motivate those stuck in a cycle of deprivation and low attainment.

Improving employability skills is also at the forefront of the programme, as the airport will be supporting students by conducting mock interviews, running CV workshops and reviewing LinkedIn profiles.

“London City Airport is one of the most significant employers in East London and we have worked with them to support the local community over many years. We have worked to promote local employment at the airport, build employability skills of local people and to support students to get interested in and pursue science, engineering and technology careers,” said Ian Parkes, CEO of ELBA.

Alongside the new volunteer scheme, the airport continues to engage with pupils from local schools by facilitating tours and arranging work experience. In February, the site donated 26 laptops to Riverside School in Barking and Dagenham to assist the disadvantaged students.

A key element of the programme is the airport’s £75,000 community fund, which allocates grants to local groups and charities within the community to influence positive change.

At present, London City is the only airport within the English capital to be accredited as a London Living Wage employer and certified by the Mayor of London’s Good Work Standard.