Sadiq Khan, the incumbent Mayor of London, has backed a new initiative that aims to tackle the issue of spiralling youth unemployment in the capital of the United Kingdom, by using Esports as a tool to try and drive young people towards a career in the industry.
London-based esports organisation LDN UTD are spearheading the campaign which will facilitate esports competition between youngsters across the capital. Furthermore, youngsters will also be able to register for a wide variety of digital workshops, held in partnership with the renowned esports tertiary education establishment Staffordshire University London, as well as the University of East London and the University of Salford.
The workshops will allow youngsters to experience how they could potentially move into a career within the burgeoning esports industry within the United Kingdom, focusing on a range of careers that extend beyond being an esports professional and include items such as video editing, managing social media accounts and graphic design.
Special Guests and Internships
The initiative will also see a number of special guests from the world of esports invited to speak with the groups of young people with FaZe Clan professional Tassal “Tass” Rushan, a well-known star on the FIFA esports scene having earned over $57,000 in total prize money and amassing 270,000 viewers on his YouTube channel, one of those that have agreed to participate.
In addition, LDN UTD have confirmed that as part of their contribution, they will be willing for some of the young people participating in the initiative to work as interns for the company.
“Much Needed Jobs for Our Community”
Recent reports into the effects of the Covid-19 crisis on the workforce has established that young people have been disproportionately affected by the number of job redundancies that have been made. One report in the UK newspaper The Guardian stated that UK youth unemployment could be ‘set to triple to 80s levels’ when around 17% of 18-29 year olds were unemployed in 1984.
These youngsters have since been dubbed the “Covid Generation.”
London Mayor Sadiq Khan has backed the initiative to help tackle the issue stating:
“The growth of esports over the past 12 months has been considerable,”
“The industry is generating millions of pounds for our economy, as well as creating much-needed jobs for our community, particularly here in London. With that growth comes a level of responsibility, and I am proud that my Sports United programme is able to help fund LDN UTD, an organisation who are using their platform and the power of esports.”
One of the most appealing aspects of the initiative is a tournament involving young people from Hackney, Kingston, Lewisham and Lambeth battling it out in the LDN UTD Inter-Borough Esports Championships from the 5th to 19th of December.
Competitors will compete in either FIFA 21 or NBA2k21 with the games broadcast live on Twitch.
Speaking about the career opportunities that could be available to young people within the esports industry, LDN UTD CEO, Oliver Weingarten, commented.
“The broader perception of esports is often focused around the very best individuals or teams competing in global tournaments, but in reality there are lots of other roles that play a vital part in creating this hyper-modern entertainment form and we’re hoping to shine a light on that over the coming months.”
“At the epicenter of the UK’s esports industry, we want to encourage young people from across London that this isn’t just something you do at home with your friends, it really is a viable career option.”