A decline in the number of apprentices entering the construction sector and the increase in the number of unemployed under 25-year olds, has given rise to a new initiative aimed at strengthening communities and offering young people skills and advancement in the building industry.
The initiative, launched this week by CC Developments UK 2007 Ltd, has been given a much-welcomed reception by community development schemes in London and its surrounding boroughs.
Darren Bolger, Managing Director of CC Developments UK, with over 20 years experience in the industry said: “The introduction of the new initiatives will offer builders, tradesmen and professional service providers within the construction sector the opportunity to work in their immediate communities through our accreditation scheme.
“Through our Apprenticeship Scheme, we are also providing under 25-year-olds the opportunity to access the construction sector, working with professional companies and offering them the chance to build on their future, resulting in long-term vocational careers within the building and construction industry.”
Statistics released by ONS (Office for National Statistics) revealed last week that unemployment within the under-25 year old age bracket has hit the highest level since 1992 with figures resting at 1.2million.
Further research by BIS (Business Innovation and Skills) reveal a decline in the number of apprenticeship starts for the construction sectors, compared to 2008/2009 and only a 5% increase up from last year.
The apprenticeship scheme launched by CC Developments UK 2007 Ltd is being piloted in and around London and it’s surrounding boroughs and is forecast to provide up to 1000 apprenticeships within the first year. The scheme will be driven nationally in regional phases throughout 2012/2013.
Mr. Bolger further added: “The apprenticeship schemes will offer under-25-year-olds the opportunity to work on projects within their communities. Partnerships, which we have forged through community link building, will provide the necessary mentoring to deliver long-term strategies, work and continued progress to all apprentices under our scheme.
“Under the accreditation umbrella of A.C.E (Academy of Construction Excellence) scheme, builders, construction companies and personnel will be offered building projects in their own localities, driving construction to local and community levels, thus economically strengthening each community and offering young people in the area work and training and vocationally long-term prospects.”
Supported by Community Leaders
Kevin Jenkins, OBE, co-founder of Community Links, who received the Overall Beacon Fellowship Award in 2001 for 30-years of building communities with young people welcomed the initiative. Mr. Jenkins said: “The Apprenticeship Programme launched by CC Developments will no doubt have a positive impact on both communities and young people in general. The scheme will enable unemployed youngsters to move on in a difficult time and to give them a chance to build their futures. This is a wonderful initiative.”
Community Links , an East London charity works with over 30,000 people each year, working within one of the most deprived areas in the UK. The charity, which ran the most successful New Deal project in London and the South East, also advises people about benefits, housing and debt problems. Last year alone, Community Links ran youth clubs and children’s activities for almost 4000 young people.
Kevin Everard and David Morris of the SIP (Specialist Intervention Providers) scheme will also be working alongside the Apprenticeship Initiative. SIP, which works extensively with young people, provides mentoring and offers alternatives, steering young people away from crime culture, instead offering them choices, which would otherwise be out of their scope.
The organization, ran by Mr. Everard and Mr. Morris is backed by the Home Office, provides quality training to young people and professionals in an effort to make the UK a safer place. Through the training that both Kevin and David have provided, 300,000 youngsters have benefited since the pair first launched in 1998.
In response to CC Development’s Initiative, Mr Morris, a former police officer, said:
“ Having worked with thousands of young people from some of the most deprived areas of the Country, I have seen so many of them fall into a criminal lifestyle.
“ They see no legal opportunities to provide a future for themselves. At last, with CC Development’s scheme, any young person has a viable alternative. With dedication and hard work, any young person can learn skills, which will provide a future for them and their family.”
Equally enthused by the Initiative, Mr. Everard also a former police officer said:
“ Having worked on community based projects since 1998 predominately with young people, one of the main issues effecting the prospects of their future is that they struggle to find employment. The Apprenticeship scheme will provide opportunities that have not been there in the past.
“ Through our experience, positive relationships built through work can replace negative relationships built through inner-city gangs and provide a positive identity and a sense of self-worth in young people.”
Zac Goldsmith, Conservative MP for Richmond Park & North Kingston also supports the Initiative. Mr Goldsmith said: “Apprenticeships offer the best possible preparation for young adults, particularly at a time where jobs are short and university qualifications have been devalued. This is a very valuable initiative and I wish it well.”
Building and construction sector companies can call Eric Churet on 0203 405 2553 for more information about A.C.E. membership.
Sources: ONS; BIS
Notes: Further information surrounding the Apprenticeship Schemes will be released in the next couple of months along with event(s) notices. For inclusion of further information surrounding this and any other schemes within CC Developments UK 2007, email your interest to: CCDEVELOPMENTS@CLOCKWORKCONTENT.COM