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22 February 2017, 14:03
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon says that young people across Scotland will continue to benefit from a £6.1 million employment fund.
The funding for Community Jobs Scotland (CJS) will support up to 700 new job opportunities for 16 to 19-year-olds who face difficulties finding employment - including those with disabilities and past criminal convictions.
Speaking at The Gathering in Glasgow, an event for people working in the third sector, Ms Sturgeon said: ''For the last six years, the voluntary and third sector, led by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), has delivered our Community Jobs Scotland programme.
''It has created job opportunities for more than 7,500 people and since 2011 more than 3,000 young people have been helped into jobs.
''CJS gets young people who are most in need of additional support into employment.
''Enabling them to make a contribution to our economy and our society is positive for them as individuals - and it's also good for all of us.
''The more we encourage and enable people to fulfil their potential, the stronger and more prosperous we become as a country.''
SCVO chief executive Martin Sime said: ''This new funding from Scottish Government means 700 more young people will get the chance to make a valuable contribution to their community while earning a wage and developing new skills.
''This is life-changing stuff for young unemployed people in Scotland, especially those who are furthest from the labour market and who are so often failed by other employment programmes.''