phil redmond (198)
One is broadening out the current volunteer scheme at National Museums Liverpool (NML) - where Mr Redmond is chairman - which helps give practical work experience and transferable skills such as First Aid training to jobless people.
He said: “We have over 500 volunteers working alongside staff at the museum and the average age is below 30 for 50% of those volunteers.
“There is a model here for us to let people run public assets such as museums, libraries and council services outside normal staffing hours.
“Such training could be used to gain an employer-recognised qualification.”
Another plan is for exhibitions to be held as a platform for people to put forward their own ideas on how local services could be improved.
A “Big Society Bank” will provide start-up loans for local initiatives using cash lying untouched in accounts for 15 years and thought to total around £400m.
Ministers hope it will be operational quickly enough to see the first money distributed to groups by next April.
Mr Cameron denied that his “Big Society” agenda was a cover for public service cuts.
He said: “It is not a cover for anything.I was talking about the big society and encouraging volunteering, encouraging social enterprises, voluntary groups to do more to make our society stronger. I was talking about that way before we had a problem with cuts and deficits and all the rest of it. “This would be a great agenda whether we were having to cut public spending or whether we were increasing public spending.”
He added: “This is not about trying to save money, it is about trying to have a bigger, better society.”
In his speech, Mr Cameron said that years of top-down government control have turned capable people into “passive recipients of state help”, lively communities into “dull soulless clones” and motivated public sector workers into “disillusioned weary puppets of government targets”.