Allerdale council leads by example with four new apprentices
Last updated at 13:41, Friday, 27 January 2012
Allerdale council has taken on four new apprentices and a graduate in the hope that other businesses will be encouraged to support young people.
The council has taken on the new recruits with the help of £25,000 of funding from the North West Coalfield Communities Regeneration Programme.
Council leader Alan Smith said: “It is no good badgering firms to take on apprentices if we don’t have any. As a leading example for the authority we need to be providing opportunities for young people to progress.
“Hopefully it will set them up for a worthwhile job in the future.”
The funding was made available to the council through the Routes 2 Work initiative, which is delivered by Derwent & Solway Housing Association.
Routes 2 Work manager Julie Wedgwood said: “We are delighted to work in partnership with Allerdale Council, supporting them financially to provide opportunities to people from some of the most deprived wards within the borough.”
TIFFANIE BLAIR, 17, of Ewanrigg Road, Maryport, started a full-time business administration course at Lakes College in September but decided she wanted to learn in a more practical environment. She will be working in the democratic services department of the council.
She said: “When you learn things in the classroom you don’t know what it is really like, so I think it is better to experience it first-hand then you know what to expect when you go in to the workplace.”
KELLY HAMPSON, 18, of Windermere Avenue, Maryport, will be working in the customer services centre. She had been studying at Netherhall Sixth Form since September 2010.
She said: “I applied for the apprenticeship because I wanted to take a different approach to learning where it is more work-based and gain more experience of what the workplace is like.”
JAMES KNOWLES, of Mason Terrace, Flimby, has been chosen for a six-month graduate placement in IT. He completed a two-year higher level diploma in software development which is the equivalent to the first two years of a degree.
After looking for work since July, he was told of the placement by Routes 2 Work who put his CV forward for the role.
He said: “I felt that experience was more important than going to university to do the third year of the degree. I felt I had done enough with education and wanted to get experience.
“I am looking forward to putting my skills to use in this environment.”
DONNA MARDEN, 18, of Harcourt Street, Workington, will be working in the policy and communications department. She is currently in the second year of a business course at Lakes College which she is hoping to complete alongside the apprenticeship.
She said: “With the lack of jobs out there at the moment, I hope this will give me a range of skills to take into the workplace.”
MATTHEW SMITH, 19, of Victoria Terrace, Maryport, will be working in the IT department. The IT apprenticeship was created especially for him after his skills shone through in the interview he had for the apprenticeship scheme.
He had previously applied to go to university but had to withdraw his application because of a lack of accommodation. He also hopes the apprenticeship will give him experience that will help when applying for jobs in the future.
Meanwhile, Routes 2 Work has celebrated its 10th anniversary. The project, led by Derwent & Solway Housing Association, has helped more than 3,500 people into training and employment.
The association has published a book to mark to celebration.
The scheme was launched in 2001 as part of a push by Allerdale Council to regenerate West Cumbria.
With funding of £5.7million, Routes 2 Work has helped people overcome barriers to employment.
The money has paid for an employment and training centre, community outreach workers, classroom assistant training for 24 people and Meet the Employer jobs fairs.
Apprenticeships were also at the forefront recently for Cumbria County Council which saw the first of 100 new trainees start an apprenticeship as part of an initiative launched by the authority.
Thirty-four started their training programme in apprenticeships including business administration health and social care, youth work, and supporting teaching and learning in schools and childcare.
The training will be delivered by a joint partnership between Gen II and Kendal College.
Age UK, Impact Housing and Cumbria Community Foundation are some of the voluntary and community sector partners who have worked in conjunction with Cumbria County Council to offer apprenticeship placements.
Elizabeth Mallinson, responsible for organisational development with the council, said they were proud to offer young people the chance to become apprentices with the council.
“This commitment is part of our long-term vision to develop a thriving economy in Cumbria and make it a place where young people will want to live and work in the future,” she added.
The new apprentices took part in a three-day induction in the Energus training centre at Lillyhall.
Mike Smith, chief executive of Gen II, said: “We are delighted that we have been awarded this contract. The Cumbria County Council apprenticeships will provide local people with rewarding and valuable training which will not only help to boost the skills across the county, but also help support job opportunities and contribute to the economic good of Cumbria.
“Both Gen II and Kendal College have recently been awarded an Ofsted Outstanding Grade 1 for their apprenticeship programmes and together we can offer some of the best training available in the county.”
The next round of apprenticeship recruitment drives is planned for within the next couple of months.
All vacancies will be advertised on the National Apprenticeship Service site at www.apprenticeships.org.uk.
For more information email the apprenticeship service at the council at firstname.lastname@example.org.
First published at 11:07, Thursday, 26 January 2012
Published by http://www.cumberlandnews.co.uk