Housing company boost for tenant job seekers
Published by Jamie Angus for Wolverhampton Homes in Housing and also in Local Government
Wolverhampton Homes' new LEAPers
Council tenants living in Wolverhampton and looking for work have received a boost this week with local housing company, Wolverhampton Homes, taking on its biggest in-take of tenants through its award-winning work experience programme.
Wolverhampton Homes, the Arms Length Management Organisation (ALMO) which manages more than 23,000 homes in the city on behalf of the council, launched its Learning, Employment and Achievement Programme, dubbed ‘LEAP’, last year and has so far helped more than 100 council tenants and their families to get work experience, training and qualification opportunities.
More than 40 tenants have already secured twelve-month apprenticeships through the scheme, with 16 tenants securing full time jobs, including Michelle Sawyer, 41, from Bilston who, having never worked before, last year was named runner-up in the National Apprentice of the Year Awards.
Marking the start of National Apprenticeship Week 2014, twenty council tenants have today signed up to LEAP. The biggest in-take so far for the programme, they’ll work for eight weeks, learning new skills and getting the all-important experience which they hope will boost their chances of getting back into work in the future. Some of those will hopefully go on to secure apprenticeships with the company and other local businesses.
Sue Roberts MBE, Chair of the Board at Wolverhampton Homes said:
“It’s great to see so many tenants taking up this opportunity. It’s often a catch-22 situation for council tenants who are desperate to get into work. They often don’t have experience, but without being given a chance how do they get that experience? This is why the LEAP programme is ideal. It gives them the chance to gain experience and get a taste for full-time employment.”
Wolverhampton Homes’ LEAP programme has been hailed as ‘trailblazing’ by local MP and Shadow Housing Minister Emma Reynolds and beat off competition from household names like NatWest, Vodafone, O2 and ASDA last year to be named as winner of the Peer Awards for Excellence for its work in supporting the local community.
People can find out more about LEAP online at www.wolverhamptonhomes.org.uk.