Pilot programme helps young people get into home building


THE first students of a new programme designed to help unemployed young people into careers in the home building industry have celebrated their graduation.

Fourteen young people have been participating in the five week pilot ‘Get into Home Building’ course at Edinburgh College, developing skills across a variety of trade disciplines (including carpentry, plastering, brickwork and painting and decorating) and gaining hands-on experience with some of Scotland’s leading home builders.

In addition to acquiring valuable site knowledge, the students also achieved CSCS site safety cards and received wider training to help improve communication, reliability, teamwork and CV/interview skills. With all students having successfully completed the scheme, its positive impact is already being felt as seven have already secured jobs or full apprenticeships and others are still working with programme partners or considering their choices in light of their new found experience.

19-year-old Aaron Orr is one of those with an apprenticeship lined up and said, “I’ve really enjoyed the course and being given the chance to get a taster of so many different trades. It’s quite unique to get the opportunity to try out painting and decorating, carpentry, joinery, plastering and brickwork all in five weeks, and it’s been good to find out what I’m interested in and what I’m good at.

“I’ve now managed to get a painting and decorating apprenticeship with Miller Homes. It’s going to last for four years and I know it’ll be a brilliant opportunity.”

Sandy Adam, Chair of trade body Homes for Scotland, which has been leading the scheme with The Prince’s Trust, said, “Home building is a major employer with each home built estimated to directly support two jobs and every nine homes built one apprenticeship. However, skill shortages are proving a major barrier to the industry’s ability to increase production as the economy and housing market recover. Given the success of this pilot programme, it has the potential to be rolled out across the country and help attract the young people our industry requires to develop skills and deliver the many thousands of homes Scotland needs.”