24-year-old Taide Ward was one of the first people to complete the course. She said: “I lost my job in admin but the Council helped me get a new job doing admin for a big building firm. I needed my CSCS card to be able to get on site. The teachers at South Thames have really encouraged us to do well and the lessons run really easily. Now I’ve got my card that means I can keep my job and I’ve picked up extra skills too.”
With huge building and infrastructure projects across Wandsworth borough, including developments at Nine Elms and Battersea, there is increasing demand for tradespeople. Students who complete the course are being guided into start roles on local sites and the Council has secured agreements with local developers to earmark new jobs, apprenticeships and traineeships specifically for unemployed Wandsworth residents.
Karan Jay, training manager at South Thames College, said, “This course gives you a great overview and hands on experience of the skills needed on site. It helps make people work ready – which is key to getting local people into jobs and helping them succeed. Delivering this course with Work Match is important to us – a college should play a big part in the local community and our teams have plenty of experience in giving people the skills to do well.”
The training pilot delivered by South Thames is commissioned by Wandsworth and Lambeth Councils and also involves specialist construction training provider, Mainport.
Ravi Govindia, leader of Wandsworth Council, added: “The construction industry could offer you a rewarding and well paid career. There are a great variety of jobs to choose from and our training courses will guide you into a new role in Nine Elms or on another local development.”
The free pilot is part of the Wandsworth Jobs Package - a series of initiatives designed to help local people into work and to benefit from the borough’s expanding jobs market. It brings together local employers, South Thames College, training providers, charities, Job Centre Plus, the Department for Works and Pensions and the Nine Elms Vauxhall Partnership.