Budding Builders; an Outsider's Perspective

Over the last couple of weeks, as a part of my internship at Construction Youth Trust, I have had the privilege of helping out at their training centre in Bermondsey assisting on one of their, Budding Builders programmes.

The course is geared towards young men and women in the London area who wish to gain their Health and Safety Level One qualification, and a CSCS card which enables them to gain employment on a building site.

During the course so far, which started on Monday the 15th of February and lasts for three weeks, ten new recruits began their journey towards a career in construction. The guys have come on leaps and bounds in both the classroom, and the workshop, with all ten students looking fully on track to gain their Level one qualification.

The day is split into two halves, with the students spending their mornings studying in the classroom, and their afternoons in the workshop. In the classroom they have been gaining invaluable knowledge about health and safety on building sites, whilst in the workshop trying their hand at some dry lining and filling. Next week they’ll be moving on to some painting and decorating.

What I’ve gauged so far from the programme, is that it provides an amazing opportunity for young people, many of whom come from extremely difficult backgrounds, to pick themselves up and put themselves on track to a promising career in construction. In the last few weeks alone ten students have gained their CSCS cards, and on a similar course that the trust have been running in Camden, seven out of eight of the course completers gained their CSCS cards, with the last one due to take hers this week.

After the students gain their CSCS cards, the Trust then helps them to get work placements in the local area through a programme called Routes into Construction. Routes into Construction provides a pivotal link between young people in the local community, and big construction companies that operate there. Last week they completed three work placements, one with Willmott Dixon and two with Brookfield Multiplex. One of the young people, Oggie at Brookfield Multiplex was offered a full time job.

All of this goes to show that the hard work the Trust carries out in the community is clearly paying off, and I feel proud to have been part of a team that provides such an important service to disadvantaged young people in London.

Jon Perrins