Introducing women to opportunities in Building Repairs & Maintenance

Last week we ran a free workshop with Mears which aimed to inspire more women into the trades.

Last Friday women from across London attended a free ‘trade’ taster workshop focused on Repairs & Maintenance and organised by Mears Group, the leading provider of maintenance services to social housing, working in partnership with Construction Youth Trust.

After the success of the first two workshops last year in Nottingham and Cardiff, a third Taster Day was held at the Construction Youth Trust, Training Centre in Bermondsey last week.

The series of workshops around the UK aims to provide a practical and inspiring  learning experience for women who wish to ‘have a go’ at a trade before deciding on whether to pursue a career in building maintenance.

The taster session consisted of practical training work in several trade skills including plumbing, joinery, and painting and decorating led by a qualified trades trainer. The women were also informed of career opportunities in the Repairs & Maintenance sector and the progression and support systems open to them.

Another 3 taster sessions are planned for this year in Manchester, Brighton, and Canterbury.

One of the participants commented: “We need more of these initiatives for every borough … I wish I had brought all the women I know to this event.”

Gainor Keeton, Mears Project Manager, said, “Only 1% of construction trade operatives in the construction sector are female. We are determined to do better than this and to increase the number of tradeswomen across the social housing building maintenance sector. We also support other organisations to get the message out that there are good careers for women to be had in social housing maintenance. This is not only the right thing to do but we know that the best workforce is one which reflects the communities in which we serve.”

Wendy Heller, Training, Development and Curriculum Manager at Construction Youth Trust commented, “15 women came through the door today with very little or no previous knowledge or experience of the building repairs and maintenance sector. After participating in various tasks and workshops, 11 confirmed they would now happily consider a career in the sector. Clearly, knowledge is the key here; knowledge of the industry itself, knowledge of potential opportunities, skills knowledge and the assurance that, given these opportunities, women can enjoy a long, productive and successful career in the building repairs and maintenance sector.”

Take a look at all the photos from the workshop on our Facebook page here.

If you are interested in finding out more about careers in the trades, we are running the Budding Builders course on a regular basis and welcome young people from all London boroughs who are currently looking to gain a CSCS card, and find employment or training.

Find upcoming courses here.