Community News May 26, 2019

Shaping Southwark’s Future – connecting young people to local regeneration


It is vitally important that local residents can benefit directly from the changes to their area. We also know that construction, and more broadly the built environment professions, such as engineering, face well-documented skills shortages. Moreover, employment within these sectors suffers as it struggles to appeal as a career choice for young people, when the reality is that the sector can provide a wealth of entry-level roles with substantial opportunities for progression.

Therefore, we are delighted to have come together with United St Saviour’s Charity, Southwark Construction Skills Centre and Construction Youth Trust to launch the Shaping Southwark’s Future programme. The programme is an education and employment partnership which aims to tackle just these issues, and ensure that young people local to the masterplan area are aware of the numerous employment, skills and career development opportunities that the developments, including Canada Water Masterplan, will generate over the next decade.

The programme is being run by Construction Youth Trust in eight secondary schools in North Southwark, including Bacon’s Academy, City of London Academy, as well as with local community organisations and referral partners. At the core of the programme are inspirational construction and built environment-led engagements, aligned with the curriculum from Year 7 onwards. These engagements often involve volunteer industry professionals including Emma Cariaga and Symon Bacon from the CWM team, pictured below, participating in one the recent engagement programmes at a local school.

So far, since launching in November last year, approximately 2,500 young people in the schools and community have already engaged with the programme.

The programme also works with those young people who are currently, or are at risk of being, not in education, employment or training through the Budding Builders programme. The next course will be held in Bermondsey on 8th – 17th July 2019 and is open to all 16 – 18 year olds (see contact details below).

The potential for career progression within the construction and built environment can be exponential, regardless of the level someone enters the industry. Shaping Southwark’s Future wants to ensure that the young people of Southwark are part of the development of their borough and feel included by the industry rather than left watching from the side lines.

If you are, or you know someone between the ages of 15 – 30 and would like to take part in the Shaping Southwark’s Future programme, email megan.valuks@constructionyouth.org.uk for details of upcoming free courses and events.

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