FORTY two recruits have been welcomed into Fife’s new Construction Skills Academy at the Skills Development Centre in Kirkcaldy for a two day pre recruitment course, tailored to the industry requirements. This is designed to offer participants opportunities to enhance their employability skills and complete relevant assessments allowing them to be employer ready.
Various local businesses have signed up to the Fife Youth Job Contract and have created new construction opportunities which will result in apprenticeships in plastering, joinery and tiling.
Addressing the young trainees, Leader of Fife Council, Councillor Alex Rowley said:
“Young people’s experience has shown that in the past, courses have not always led to a job or courses were not appropriate for the job they were applying for. Now college courses are linked to an employer. I am delighted at how Fife Council and Opportunities Fife are delivering these training opportunities.
“The Construction Industry is now picking up. We are committed to building 2700 badly needed houses for rent over the next four years across Fife and it is our aim that local Fife companies can access these contracts.
Lots of small companies have a fear of taking on an apprentice in case they don’t have continued work coming in. The support that the Fife Youth Job Contract can offer employers will give them the confidence to take on a young person. It’s vital that we ensure the opportunities are out there for our unemployed 16 to 24 year olds to give them hope and a good future to work towards.”
One of the participating businesses, Ian Short Plastering of Burntisland welcomed the development of the programme. Ian commented: “I moved to Fife from Plymouth last year where I had three staff, including an apprentice. I seriously struggled to find a plasterer working to my standards in Fife so I thought it would be better to train up my own apprentice. However, I needed to focus on growing the business. The Construction Training Board alerted me to the fact funding was available and the support I have been given through access to advice and premises for interviewing has been really superb. This all helped to take the stress out of deciding to take on an apprentice.”
The Fife Youth Job Contract is Fife Council’s £5 million investment in Apprenticeships over the next three years and an annual £1 million investment in Council apprenticeships.