Whether inspiring school children, training teenagers, offering work experience to apprentices or providing a new career path for older generations, staff have been helping people to realise their potential during the six-month refurbishment of Coventry University London.
Here’s just a few of the quotes from young people – many of whom face family problems, have been involved in gang crime, gone to prison, or who have been homeless – who took part in motivational exercises, challenges, games, mock interviews and one-to-one mentoring at the 3 day job skills programme:
“This course has made me believe that I will be able to get a job in the future.”
“The course has given me opportunities to turn my life around which I never previously had.”
“The course was very supportive and gave me a push to chase my dreams.”
Take apprentices Adam Greenwood and Liam Candler for example. Both local lads were offered the opportunity to gain the work experience they needed to pursue their qualifications and get paid jobs.
Likewise mature student Izuchukwu Dike, who after more than 15 years working in the trade was able to complete his qualification for dry lining thanks to the support of Fast Track, supply chain partners on the project.
Or how about Roxanna, who became a cleaner on construction sites after moving to London from Romania. She was encouraged to study and passed her Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) qualification and traffic marshal training. She is now a full-time fire marshal and received mentoring, guidance and English lessons during the project.
Roxanne was not the only one to receive English lessons, as we funded nearly £1,000 worth of English lessons for employees of supply chain partners too. In addition, 10 weeks of work experience placements, three ‘budding builders’ training programmes, a 3 day job skills course, site visits and workshops were provided to more than 1,000 students from local schools who are at risk of becoming NEETs (not in education, employment or training).
As well as helping people, the project has benefited the environment, with recycled wood used to build a range of items including planters, in which local school children were invited to plant flowers to attract bees, butterflies and other local wildlife.
Green-fingered staff also gave a £30,426 face lift to a local allotment which caters for the elderly, single parents and people with mental health issues who live locally.