The Speaker’s Parliamentary Placement Scheme - a programme to get individuals from low incomes involved in politics - is launching its second year.
Hazel Blears, who thought up the scheme with Eric Ollerenshaw and Jo Swinson, told Total Politics and Biteback why it is important to give people from diverse backgrounds experience of how Parliament works.
Placements last year included a mother with a five-year-old who had never been to London and a former child soldier.
Blears explains: "One of the reasons that people feel disconnected from politics is that increasingly they think, 'MPs don't look like me. They don't talk like me. They haven't lived a life like mine.’
"What I'm trying to show is that people from all walks of life can come work here, can get involved in politics and public life and make a difference.
"The only criteria that we set was that you are from a low income background and you wouldn't have the means to come to London... The criteria is very open. Some people have degrees, some haven't.
"We've not had a single person drop out of the scheme, even though it's not the easiest thing to do."
Participating MPs include Mike Crockart, Simon Danczuk, Helen Grant, Karl McCartney, Siobhain McDonagh, Esther McVey, Amber Rudd and Jo Swinson.
To apply for the next round of placements, click here.