Apprentice Scheme Goes From Strength to Strength
Published by Michael Ord for South Tyneside Homes in Housing and also in Communities
Councillor Jim Foreman (Lead Member for Housing & Transport -South Tyneside Council) meets up with South Tyneside Homes apprentices to welcome new starters
SOUTH TYNESIDE HOMES APPRENTICE SCHEME GOES FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH
South Tyneside Homes’ apprenticeship scheme is proving popular with young people from across the Borough, as the programme is helping a great deal of them onto the first rung of the employment ladder.
South Tyneside Homes extended a warm welcome to 11 new trade and business apprentices over the last few months. The company now has 24 trade and four office-based apprentices in total.
The apprentices develop skills including plastering, electrical, joinery, painting, plumbing, general maintenance, business admin, housing and information technology.
Whilst many of South Tyneside Homes’ apprentices are of school leaving age, an apprentice for the company is a person of any age with the right attitude, values and desire to make a difference.
The apprentices attend college or undertake work based assessment to attain NVQ levels 2 and 3 at the same time as gaining ‘on the job’ training by working alongside experienced members of staff.
South Tyneside Homes Apprentice Scheme has received a number of awards in recent years. They have been recognised two years in a row as being one of the best apprentice employers in the country. The Trade Union Congress presented the company with an award in September last year in recognition of the work they do in employing and developing apprentices.
Gary Kirsop, Head of Property Services at South Tyneside Homes, said: “We are extremely proud of our award winning apprentice programme and the development opportunities we offer. It’s a fantastic opportunity for local people to build a career for themselves, acquiring the skills they need in a modern and successful organisation. It also allows us to build and continually improve on our high standards. We give our apprentices opportunities which are both life-changing and exciting.
“There were hundreds of applicants for the recent positions and we were delighted to welcome our new apprentices to the company. We wish them every success for the future.”
Councillor Jim Foreman, Lead Member for Housing and Transport at South Tyneside Council and Chair of South Tyneside Homes’ Great Services Committee said: “As a local employer and forward thinking company, South Tyneside Homes place great importance in employing and training apprentices.”
Councillor Foreman, added: “It is fantastic that we are able to grow our own local talent. Out of the 28 apprentices, 24 actually live in South Tyneside, so giving local people this start is great for the company. All the apprentices will gain an NVQ qualification which will build excellent foundations for their future careers. I wish them all the very best of luck. It is also pleasing to see that two of our first Business Admin Apprentices have gained permanent positions with South Tyneside Homes. Congratulations to Sam Nixon and Louise Addison.”
Sam Nixon gained a permanent post as a Housing Support Officer and Louise Addison is now a Customer Services Advisor. Both colleagues have successfully completed an NVQ 2 in Business Administration and are building their careers with South Tyneside Homes.
Here are the thoughts of two newcomers to the South Tyneside Homes apprenticeship scheme.
Ross Hargreaves, apprentice electrician, said: “I am so pleased to be given the opportunity to learn a trade and become a qualified electrician. South Tyneside Homes has given me a great start on the career ladder.”
Matthew Clark, business administration apprentice, said: “I was very pleased to be offered an apprentice post. I am learning to manage my time and carry out administrational tasks. All the staff are helpful and friendly, and it is a good place to develop my skills.”
South Tyneside Homes also encourages the values of a prestigious new scheme that was launched in October last year at Buckingham Palace. The National Apprentice Service’s scheme encourages employers to recognise the achievements of apprentices who complete an advanced apprenticeship framework (NVQ Level 3). These tributes are welcomed by the company and are a true reflection of South Tyneside Homes’ commitment to employing and developing apprentices.
If you are interested in applying to join our apprenticeship programme then look out for our new advert this spring by visiting www.southtynesidehomes.org.uk