SEATTLE, Washington — Hilton Hotels recently established the Hilton Effect Foundation in 2019 as a part of Hilton’s 100th anniversary. Since branching the Hilton Foundation into the Hilton Effect Foundation sector, the organization provided grants to approximately 23 organizations on October 22, 2020. Springboard U.K. and the KARI Foundation charity organization received two grants to encourage work skill training for young adults and tackle unemployment during COVID-19. As the U.K. has seen only 757,000 young adults between 16 and 24 not working or attending school in September 2020, online work training provides young adults and the unemployed an opportunity to acquire work skills that can help alleviate poverty soon.
Unemployment in the UK and Australia
The U.K. unemployment rate has recently increased by 0.3% to 4.8% in September 2020 as temporary unemployment increased from 181,000 to 314,000 people by September 2020. One positive initiative comes from the U.K. Coronavirus Jobs Retention Scheme helps nearly 2 million furloughed employees receive 80% of their original salary of up to £2,500 a month until March 2021. On the other end, the Australian Labor Force estimated that the unemployment rate rose to 7% in October 2020.
Springboard UK and Hilton Effect Collaboration
In an interview with The Borgen Project, Springboard U.K.’s National Head of Employability Inga McVicar said that the organization has been working since 1990 by collaborating with the U.K. Department of Work and Pensions Job centers to recruit participants while working with charities to support young adults in training. The Springboard U.K. and the Hilton Effect Foundation’s Support into Work program will begin November 30, 2020, as the organization continues to train hundreds of young adults in hospitality and other industries online during COVID-19. The organization represents the central belt of Scotland, Ireland, northern England and Wales and select other areas in the U.K.
The two-week Support into Work Program will undergo initiation to help train young adults and the unemployed in Birmingham, Leicester and the Midlands in England into an intended work position in hospitality and other related careers. The three elements of online learning, webinars and participant mentorship can help solve unemployment during COVID-19 by helping people obtain work. McVicar said that the virtual program aims for participants to “regain their confidence and give them some new skills, maybe additional skills, and also again help them identify the opportunities that are found in their local area.”
Springboard U.K.’s Digital Hospitality Academy and Future Chef online program provide a way for students and the unemployed to obtain career skills from an early age. McVicar also mentioned that the Hilton grant has helped reach more young adults and introduce them to Hilton partners as Springboard utilizes an aftercare system lasting between three months and a year after program participation.
KARI Foundation and Hilton Effect Collaboration
As COVID-19 continues to impact hospitality and other industries, the Australian Skills Quality Authority has recommended students to attend work training or vocational education training (VET) classes virtually or in a physically distanced environment. The KARI Foundation started in 2017 with the aim of providing school scholarships for students as the KARI Limited sector remains the number one source of aboriginal foster care in Australia. The organization received a grant to help the organization give aboriginal communities an opportunity for employment, business and education development during COVID-19.
KARI’s Head of Partnerships, Marketing and Fundraising, Cain Slater told The Borgen Project that the Lead with Culture program receives support from Hilton. Slater describes the program as “a program that empowers Aboriginal people that have been disengaged using culture, our culture, and then puts them on the pathway into employment, so that’s being able to find a position that would work mainly across the hospitality sector, but not directly.”
KARI’s Indigenous Business Enterprise program has helped aboriginal people turn their business ideas into reality as KARI’s mentorship program links businesses with potential employees. Slater notified The Borgen Project that KARI has been fortunate to recently take employment programs “back to face-to-face, and over the course of the season, I guess since March, we’ve placed approximately 160 young people into employment.”
International Youth Foundation Partnership
The International Youth Foundation (IYF) has partnered with the Hilton Effect Foundation for the past eight years to provide opportunities for young adults and students to obtain work skills through the Passport to Success program. International Youth Foundation Program Director, Katie Raymond told The Borgen Project that the Hilton Foundation partnership started in 2012 and the Hilton company began adapting the Passport to Success (PTS) program for hospitality with IYF in 2015.
The Hilton Effect Foundation started working with IYF in early 2020. Raymond told The Borgen Project that Hilton Effect funding has worked to make the PTS hospitality course “accessible for free to young people in multiple languages, so the work this year has really been building that course, doing all the development and testing,” audio and video course versions. The PTS hospitality course will undergo implementation in English, Spanish, French and Arabic as an online work training to help alleviate poverty globally. IYF started testing the partnership in Mexico on November 13, 2020, and Raymond notified The Borgen Project “that employees who have gone through the Passport to Success hospitality training have had better retention and promotion rates.”
The Hilton Effect Foundation has been able to provide grants to organizations that can help alleviate global poverty through funding organizations specializing in work skill training to solve the problem of unemployment during COVID-19. The Foundation has invested in organizations that focus on economic assistance, food aid, water sources and work training that can help the unemployed become employed. The Hilton Effect partnerships have helped young adults learn more about the hospitality industry while investing in education that can lead young adults to work training that can help alleviate poverty in the future and combat unemployment during COVID-19.
– Evan Winslow