A Croydon MP is launching a new community project to tackle unemployment.

Steve Reed, MP for Croydon North, wants to lower unemployment in the north of the borough as it is higher than the London average.

The project is bringing together churches, mosques, temples, and community groups to develop a version of the Backr programme which is already run in other parts of South London.

JobCentre Plus, Business in the Community and campaign group Croydon Citizens are supporting the project.

The Backr programme secured funding from investment bank J.P. Morgan and works by training people who have jobs to coach people from their community looking for work.

Participants in the Croydon project have agreed to invite members of their organisations to come forward for training as coaches and identify those who would like to benefit from the support on offer.

Mr Reed said: “We can’t leave Croydon’s unemployed people living without hope simply because Government policies aren’t working.

“This new project mobilises the community itself to help get people back to work.

I’m grateful to the churches, mosques and temples who have all agreed to support this project. We will train volunteers from these communities to help others from the same community to find and secure employment or work experience.

“This is all about people-power and showing that the community can come together to give hope back to Croydon’s unemployed.”