A SCHEME that helped get 250 qualifications for young people has been reborn, with even more on offer for those that need it.

Routes to Opportunity (RtO), Milford Youth Matter’s scheme to encourage young people into work or further education, came to an end last month after three successful years.

In its place, the National Lottery Community Fund Wales has funded Routes to Opportunity Plus (RtOP).

The RtOP team, based in the Milford Haven Youth Centre, help young people aged 16 to 25 pick an area they would like to get a qualification in and then help them achieve it.

“Young people are involved in everything we do,” said Dayle Gibby Milford Youth Matters coordinator.

“They get to choose the route they do, its bespoke, based entirely around them. They set their own goals.

“That varies from food hygiene, first aid to woodwork. If someone comes in and says, ‘I need this qualification’ then we will try to get that for them.”

About 80 per cent of the young people who have been involved in the original RtO scheme went on to further education, further learning or into employment.

With the launch of RtOP, there will be more available to help young people, including more evening classes and a new member of staff to help with tenancy issues.

At an award ceremony for the final group of RtO, Mr Gibby congratulated those receiving their certificates.

He said: “Each young person put in that hard work and got there themselves. [The certificates] are fully deserved they put in the effort.

“People come in at a low point and we try to raise them back up, get them to set their own goals and targets.”

Jodie Mackie, 25, from Milford Haven, who was involved in the old scheme said it had been a great benefit to her while she brings up her daughter.

“It’s great,” she said “I’ve been out of work for so many years bringing up my child – with this, it was a great opportunity to get me back to work.

“I started at the café here and it has opened up so many doors.

“When my daughter is old enough to go to school this will help me go back to work.”

Now Jodie wants to help other young people who are just joining the project.

“knowing someone who is in the same circumstances as you – It’s great.”

Mr Gibby offered advice for any young person thinking of coming along, he said, “If you want to get involved, just come into the youth centre we are open nearly all the time. Or give us a ring or find us on Twitter.”