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Young People’s Blogs

Could my ‘gender identity’ stop me from getting a job?

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Transgender and other gender identity statuses are important to more and more young people. Finding and keeping a job can be affected by many things. Tiah Shepherd, a 16-year-old student in her first year of A-Level studies, reflects on equality in the workplace following her first paid job.

Is the workplace even safe anymore?

Working hard and being yourself may not be enough …

As we move into 2018, on the verge of what many would describe as great change for the world as we know it, I find myself questioning if all things have evolved as they appear to be. It’s something that once was shunned, disputed and challenged. Or should I say still is. Today, I am not limited by my female sex, as it stands biologically or outwardly. If I wanted to, I could identify as transgender, meaning that as the BBC explains in a guide to transgender and gender identity terms my gender is different from my “assigned” sex at birth – that written on my birth certificate. Equally, I could tell people that I am non-binary, meaning that I am in fact neither female nor male.

Gender identity matters to young people

Many would argue we have reached a point where this sense of individual, autonomous freedom is widely accepted, celebrated even. But maybe this acceptance is a lot more feigned that many us would like to think.It is, what I have witnessed  first-hand, as a sister to an openly transgender brother, far from genuinely being, a notion, a choice, a right, that is acknowledged positively in many significant aspects of daily life.

So, was I shocked to discover that according to Totaljobs , 53% of trans employees have felt the need to hide their trans status from colleagues? Sadly, no. Was I then shocked to find that the survey also stated 60% have experienced some form of transphobic discrimination in the workplace? Undoubtedly, yes. It is evident, that in spite of most people’s attempts to make universal acceptance a reality, this isn’t the case for society. Again this sadly does not surprise me. But what does, is that the world of work is not that safe for people to be themselves. Somewhere, that as a professional environment, I believed was protected from the disparities that hinder the prospects of others. The workplace for me, as a young person dipping my feet into gradually is a place where your contribution to an enterprise or organisation is what both defines who you are and how others perceive you. By no means should gender affect this.

Something for everyone

More than just male and female…

I’m not trans. I’m not gender fluid. I openly identify with what in the simplest sense, health forms, surveys, and quite frankly what public restrooms constitute as female.  I am the girl with the skirt on the door.

Young people explore their gender identity

So, what is my issue here? The important thing to bear in mind is that the often coined ‘umbrella’ of terms, now used to convey one’s gender, is where more so than ever, the younger generation find a safe place to belong. When my brother began his transition more than a year ago, I was like most people, who were to a degree roughly familiar with what ‘being trans’ meant. What I didn’t know, also like most people, was actually how much more there was to it. Lyfeproof exists to support young people and of course, this support stretches to all young people. And ‘all’ really means a lot nowadays as emphasised by the sheer number of articles, explorations and explanations offered by organisations such as Stonewall. Ranging from Cisgender (or Cis), where someone’s gender identity is the same as the sex they were assigned at birth (that’s most of you reading in fact), through to ‘aporagender’ a fairly new word stemming from the Greek ‘apor’, meaning ‘separate’, where one has  “a gender separate from male, female and anything in between” while still having a very strong and specific gendered feeling.

To me, it’s my social peers, my equivalents, my friends, who are increasingly choosing to consider their gender identity in a way that is clearly not bound to the two options, science, history, and rather practicalities limit us to. The thing is,  it’s also these people, that are the pioneers of what is to come. Young people are more than ready and eager to enhance the industries, the research and ultimately the thinking that continue to change and progressively better all our futures.

But, will they even be given the opportunity to do so? That is largely unclear, when the same Totaljobs report disclosed that more than one quarter (29%) have faced discrimination as early as the interview stage. I distinctly remember hearing my brother talk about his previous employer and I say distinctly because what he revealed was worth me remembering, perhaps for the wrong reasons: ‘I was purposely made to clean the female toilets and both my boss and my colleagues refused to call me by my chosen name and  instead I was addressed by my former female name, even though they explicitly knew of my trans status’. Workplace discrimination because of gender identity in the workplace

 

 Its all about change

Embracing gender identity in the workplace…

There are many more examples like my brother’s, which is my issue. In today’s climate, where finding work is only becoming more difficult for job seekers – particularly for those that Lyfeproof seeks to engage – transgender discrimination is yet another unjustified reason to refuse their employment. Thankfully, there are many instances where action is being taken to combat this downright depreciative denial. In the UK’s Gender Recognition Act of 2004 and the 2010 Equality Act, discrimination based on gender identity is officially recognized as unacceptable. Many large companies are beginning to develop zero-tolerance approaches to discrimination. There’s even a book by Jennie Kermode (Chairperson of Trans Media Watch – a charity encouraging positive media representations of the transgender community), called Transgender Employees in the Workplace giving employers guidelines for maintaining a fully inclusive workplace.

Gender identity in the workplace

But whether our businesses, companies and franchises, will and are following such suggestions I am not too sure of.  What I am sure of, is that a job opportunity should at least be there. Importantly, it should exist as a result of their skills and passions; where as far as I am aware gender, has no bearing on your capabilities. Especially, where meeting the job spec is concerned.

 

Written by Tiah Shepherd.

 

Lyfeproof – Finding creative ways to get young people life ready. Particularly through mindset. We explain things that help you move forward in life or prevent negative outcomes. We create experiences and invite people to join. We share knowledge across sports, arts, sciences, financial literacy, employability mental health & wellbeing.

Our Vision: Imagine a world where people understand their brains enough to make better decisions, then imagine fully understanding money to never be at its mercy; now thread both with individual and collective purpose so that poverty and disadvantage can be overcome for generations to come.  

Our Mission: Lyfeproof works to help young people towards well being. We aim to do this by what you see (online experiences with us), or what you feel (our events, workshops or programmes).

Our Intuition: We believe in sharing things that are proven to work for different people. 

If you care enough to share and would like to blog for Lyfeproof, please email info@Lyfeproof.co.uk, using “I want to Blog for Lyfeproof” as the subject header. We appreciate you all.

Catering Jobs for young people

Street Food Sustainable Career or Passing Fad?

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Can this Street Food Jobs help you get life ready?

Calling all food lovers! Sit down and let me take you away to food heaven. Imagine it: the crisp sizzle of a burger frying on the hot plates of the burger van while the chatter and clatter of coins and conversation pass you by; the sinfully sweet aroma of candyfloss and doughnuts combining with the savoury delicacy of chips, fresh out of the fryer.

A few years ago this would have been something many people would have only experienced at a festival or perhaps during their holidays at the seaside. But now with events such as the Digbeth Dining Club setting up near the Custard Factory, we are seeing a rapid rise in popularity and demand for the street food movement and in turn street food jobs.

Jobs For Young People In Food Industry

Street Food Jobs Birmingham

With this delectable craze quickly becoming a nationwide revolution, is this a career that young people should be interested in pursuing?

Or like many other Instagramable food crazes, is this something that will simply pass us by?
NCASS, one of the UK’s only trade associations for street food traders, certainly doesn’t think so. Their organisation exists to assist many young (or older) entrepreneurs in setting up their own business in street food. Mark Laurie, the director of this Birmingham based organisation, certainly feels that the street food industry, in its trendy and youthful glory, is of huge relevance to the community, calling it business in its rawest form. A pure market in a sense… which is enabling lots of new owner operator businesses’.  He commented that “I think younger people get the foodie revolution that’s going on, they’re driving it, so it makes sense that they would be well suited to it.”

 

Birmingham is one of the most youthful cities in the UK, with approximately 46% of its population being under 30. It’s therefore not a surprise that events like The Digbeth Dining Club that takes place near the Custard Factory every Saturday and Friday, are such a huge hit within the city.

The street food industry provides a perfect environment for the young generation of today. We have grown up with technology; being able to navigate our way around almost every kind of social media without even thinking; knowing almost every food craze imaginable from all around the world.

Through this our culinary knowledge seems to have been enhanced and some might even say refined.
We have been inspired by many years of Mary Berry on the Great British Bake Off and have gained an appreciation for the finer foods of Master Chef. We get the allergies, the need for vegan food and halal meat and most importantly we LOVE food.

Maybe you’ve always dreamed of running a business in the food industry. Perhaps you are someone who can’t get enough of addictive and wonderful environment the street food revolution brings with it. Or maybe you are simply looking for an enjoyable job that can take the stress away from your studies. Either way, this revolution is something for everyone, as Mark Laurie explains:

“For some it’s a stepping stone, for others a way of life, some simply fall into it. It depends on the individual, I have customers who do it for the smiles on their customers faces and the camaraderie of the market, others can’t wait to open a nice warm restaurant with a real roof. You don’t really know until you’ve tried it. But I would say it is for glass half full kind of people. It’s hard work and it’s no licence to print money. For every (seemingly) over night success there are many more who tick along or don’t make it work.”

If you are interested in starting your own street food business as a young entrepreneur, NCASS is the place to start your journey. They are by far one of the most supportive and beneficial organisations to begin your business with for a variety of different reasons. One of which is due to their government scheme. They are one of the only organisations in the UK that offer this ‘legal and assured’ scheme that allows you peace of mind when beginning a business, something that is comforting to know for young and perhaps inexperienced entrepreneurs that are new to the world of the food industry.

Catering Jobs for young people

NCASS – Nationwide Caterers Association – give employment and job opportunities for young people in the food industry.

With an investment of just under £5000, a bit of creativity and a bucket full of passion and ambition, with NCASS’s assistance you could find your way out onto the scene of this trendy industry. This can be true for anyone, whether you are looking for a full-time career or perhaps just a job to keep you going at university.

The NCASS have taken on university students before with great success. The Caribou Poutine company is just one of many examples. The company is run by two university students, Michael and Lizzy, who managed to balance out the stress of university exams in their second year alongside their first event at the Digbeth Dining Club. They are two very passionate young people who are characters of true inspiration for any student looking to break into the industry. They gave some advice for anyone looking to start up their own business:

“If you fully believe in it and put in the hard work you can make it happen! All the traders are so great and always help each other out, so get some good advice from those who’ve already done it – help is always there.”

 

So is the street food job just simply a new trend that will fade into the dark space where the Unicorn Frappuccino and charcoal ice cream has descended into?

With organisations like NCASS and passionate, young people behind this vibrant and enthralling scene, it seems likely that this is an industry that will stretch out and be kept alive by the up and coming generation of today.

Interested? NCASS are launching a competition to support young people with street food jobs or ideas to start their own businesses so follow NCASS  for updates.  

 

Written by Phoebe Kelly

 

 

Lyfeproof – Finding creative ways to get young people life ready. Particularly through mindset. We explain things that help you move forward in life or prevent negative outcomes. We create experiences and invite people to join. We share knowledge across sports, arts, sciences, financial literacy, employability mental health & wellbeing.

Our Vision: Imagine a world where people understand their brains enough to make better decisions, then imagine fully understanding money to never be at its mercy; now thread both with individual and collective purpose so that poverty and disadvantage can be overcome for generations to come.  

Our Mission: Lyfeproof works to help young people towards well being. We aim to do this by what you see (online experiences with us), or what you feel (our events, workshops or programmes).

Our Intuition: We believe in sharing things that are proven to work for different people. 

If you care enough to share and would like to blog for Lyfeproof, please email info@Lyfeproof.co.uk, using “I want to Blog for Lyfeproof” as the subject header. We appreciate you all.

Are you Woman Enough for I Am Marah? – Female Empowerment Platform

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Music.

Media.

And plenty of Girl Power.

On the 27th October, Iamace brought to Birmingham I am Marah, an event designed promote female empowerment and to inspire YOU to get your creative juices flowing and succeed in a career that is dictated by your ambitions. Not society’s standards. It was a night to let loose, have some fun and to be surrounded by like-minded people in an atmosphere brimming with positivity for female empowerment.

For those of you that don’t know, I am Marah translated from Arabic literally means I am Woman. A powerful statement that should never be underestimated. At least that’s what Ace believes. She is a woman whose DNA perhaps holds the exact sequence for passion and positivity. It’s her firm belief that we all have that sequence buried in our molecular structures somewhere. It’s just a case of unlocking it and unleashing our potential.

So many talented and inspirational female artists performed to prove that, with a mind packed with ambition and heart full of passion, something that, for years might have felt out of your grasp are actually achievable. Frizz Music and DJ AMS were just a couple of the incredible artists that performed in support of young women in the Birmingham community and beyond.

I am Marah is only a small (admittedly still brightly coloured) section of the umbrella system that is IamAce. This section focuses more on empowering women in the music and media industry and aims to work with women from all walks of life. Just a small portion of those people being those that suffer with illness or are going through bereavement.

Like Lyfeproof, Ace will not build your tower but instead will help shelter your leaky foundations from the rain and give you the bricks needed to build up a career. Her view is that people have to endure enough challenges in life. Financial challenges to a potential career do not need to be a part of this.

Need a laptop?

A phone?

Maybe even something as basic as decent broadband?

A supportive network under IamAce awaits for anyone with the passion and drive to succeed.

 BUT do not be fooled but the title of this blog.

 OR even, for that matter, the name of the event.

Ace’s umbrella reaches out far and wide to offer shelter to anyone stuck in the cold showers that, at times, can feel never ending. Her umbrella’s brightly bold patterning and colours should be a beacon of hope and light to anyone that needs her support.

Just because this movement is dedicated to the empowerment of women, it doesn’t mean that people from all walks of life can’t walk through the doors. Gender, age, race, sexuality are merely labels. As long as you are willing to put the time and effort in, Ace will welcome you with a huge smile, open arms and inspire you to do something incredible within the first five minutes of meeting her. Email iamace2018@gmail.com to find out more.

So come along to their next event and have a bit of fun, you never know what you might be inspired to do…

 

Written by Phoebe Kelly

 

Lyfeproof – Finding creative ways to get young people life ready. Particularly through mindset. We explain things that help you move forward in life or prevent negative outcomes. We create experiences and invite people to join. We share knowledge across sports, arts, sciences, financial literacy, employability mental health & wellbeing.

Our Vision: Imagine a world where people understand their brains enough to make better decisions, then imagine fully understanding money to never be at its mercy; now thread both with individual and collective purpose so that poverty and disadvantage can be overcome for generations to come.  

Our Mission: Lyfeproof works to help young people towards well being. We aim to do this by what you see (online experiences with us), or what you feel (our events, workshops or programmes).

Our Intuition: We believe in sharing things that are proven to work for different people. 

If you care enough to share and would like to blog for Lyfeproof, please email info@Lyfeproof.co.uk, using “I want to Blog for Lyfeproof” as the subject header. We appreciate you all