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SWT partnership encouraging apprenticeships

10 February 2022 : Council news, Community, Housing news

Somerset West and Taunton Council and construction contractor ENGIE are working with local schools to promote careers in construction through the South Bristol Youth Insight into Apprenticeships programme.

The Insight into Apprenticeships programme aims to increase students' awareness of apprenticeships and provide the skills, knowledge and confidence to help access opportunities provided by them.

South Bristol Youth deliver the programme across the Southwest. Officers from the Council’s North Taunton Woolaway Project team in partnership with ENGIE, who are currently on site completing the new homes in Phase A of the regeneration scheme, are focusing on schools in the Taunton area.

Cllr Fran Smith, Executive Member for Housing at SWT, said: “We are working with ENGIE to build new, sustainable homes which will regenerate and transform this area for local residents.

“Our partnership with them offers many more benefits to the wider community including maximising employment and training opportunities. I am really pleased to see this new focus on supporting the young workforce of the future.”

As part of the programme, SWT and ENGIE are offering visits to the North Taunton Woolaway Project site where students get a tour and a chance to speak to the team about their own routes into construction.

They also receive a presentation looking at the various careers in construction from surveying and accounting to bricklaying, plumbing, and carpentry, with advice on what makes a good CV.

Students also get to try their hand at bricklaying at the end of the visit.

The first visit from Court Fields School, Wellington, took place in January, with regular visits scheduled at the end of each month from different schools in Taunton and Wellington.

Elaine Jones, Community Investment Manager at ENGIE, said: “Encouraging people into the construction industry is a huge challenge at the moment so we are taking every opportunity we can to show people of all ages that there are careers to suit everyone in the industry.

“Thank you to everyone involved for making the first visit a success. I think we may have encouraged some students to take up a career in construction which is a fantastic outcome! We are looking forward to welcoming the next group of students later in February.”