Knowsley Housing Trust (KHT) has pledged to create 25 new apprenticeships by the end of 2012.
The housing association, which owns 13,500 homes in Knowsley, has signed up to the National Housing Federation’s North West Apprenticeship Commitment and pledged that by the end of the year five per cent of its workforce will be apprentices.
KHT is among more than 30 social landlords in the North West that are working with the National Housing Federation to ensure the sector steps up to the mark and provides opportunities for young people to start their careers.
On September 7 housing associations met with the NHF, which represents housing associations across the country, at Burnley Football Club in East Lancashire to discuss ways of employing more apprentices.
Louise Reese, KHT Corporate and Social Responsibility Manager, also spoke about KHT’s approach to apprentices and tackling worklessness.
She said: “We are proud of the investment we have already made in helping young people into careers in Knowsley. Young people need opportunities now more than ever and this new pledge sets out our continuing commitment for the future.”
Of these 25 new apprenticeships, KHT has already welcomed a new intake of 14 apprentices in various roles in recent weeks.
This follows 10 apprentices already enrolled at KHT earlier this year.
Housing associations can offer a variety of apprenticeship roles, ranging from IT and marketing to horticulture, plumbing and construction.
Apprenticeships last between 12 months and three years, and aim to equip young people with the relevant skills and NVQ qualifications to gain permanent jobs at the end of their placements.
Daniel Klemm, North West lead manager for the National Housing Federation, added: “Housing associations across the North West are investing heavily in communities, providing young people with first class apprenticeship opportunities to get them on the first rung of the career ladder.
“Rather than giving people a hand-out, our members are giving the next generation a hand-up into work against a backdrop of high youth unemployment. They offer up opportunities to train in a vast range of trades from plumbing and electrics to office roles such as book-keeping, IT and marketing.”