Young people are becoming increasingly desperate in the hunt for employment, saying there is "no hope", as 26% are out of work, education or training for more than three years.
As statistics published earlier this week showed, the future looks bleak for Neets. "There are days when I feel that there is no hope," says recently-graduated Tobi Akingbade.
The 21-year-old who studied mass media communications at Hertfordshire University is hunting for her dream job in journalism. But as she struggling to find one, she's decided to settle for a job as a receptionist. Except she can't get one of those either.
"I understood that getting a graduate job would be hard," she tells the Huffington Post UK, "but I am shocked that finding a job as a receptionist is proving to be just as hard."
Tobi Akingbade is struggling to find a job despite submitting 70 applications in less than three months
"Since leaving university in May I have applied for 70 jobs. Aware that finding a job in media is more difficult than any other sector, I did apply for jobs in call centres or as a receptionist, so that I can make some money whilst pursing my dreams. I am still applying."
Despite her experiences, and various charities and unions blaming the government for high levels of youth unemployment,
Tobi says she doesn't feel she has been let down.
"The government aren't necessarily responsible for my employment or the fact that my dream lies in a very competitive sector." However she does add: "If I was amongst the students who were affected by the increased tuition fees, I would feel let down as my degree would feel like a waste of time - and money."
And, as Tobi notes, she is not alone. "I know plenty of people in my situation. The situation is so bad that graduates are applying for teaching courses because they are free and guarantee a job within a year.
"I think this problematic, this nation's flawed education system is producing teachers who may not have a genuine interest in teaching.
"Additionally, I have one friend that only landed a job in journalism three years after graduating and a few more that are now permanent sales assistants.
"In short, the future for the young and unemployed people looks very bleak. At the moment it feels like there are more qualified people than qualified roles.
"I do feel like my potential is being wasted but I challenge these feelings by applying for more jobs and being pro-active by freelancing when the opportunity arises."
Niall McCloskey is a 19-year-old whose recently dropped out of an ICT degree at university to refigure what he wants to do with his life. He decided to take a year out to think about which career he wanted to pursue, and originally planned to work in the meantime. Currently, Niall's struggling to get even a part-time job and is volunteering at a local charity to fill the time.
"I have even emailed quite a few restaurants and bars to see about doing unpaid placement just to get the experience," he says. "At the moment, I'm really not sure I hold out any hope of getting the job I'm after. It's a lot tougher than I expected.
Niall says he feels his potential is being wasted, echoing the feelings of more than half of young people out of work, education and training. "I know what I could offer in regards to a business and not having the chance to show that is quite frustrating," he adds. "It's quite tough now at the moment but I'm sure the future for young people can't get much worse."
If you're under 25 and unemployed, and want to share your experiences, we'd love to hear from you. Just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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