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National Collaborative working group May – Youth Education and Engagement

Throughout May, our National Collaborative Working Groups focused on the critical theme of Youth Education and Engagement. Whilst it’s no secret the industry is facing skills shortages, we felt this theme would be an opportunity for contractor partners to break down perceptions and spark encouragement for careers in construction. Across the country, groups of contractors worked together to design and hold a series of site visits and presentations for school students and young people.

This month’s activities provided a valuable glimpse behind the scenes of the construction industry to the next generation, whilst showcasing the roles available off and on site, and the many moving parts of delivering a construction project.

Jack Neath, our Social Value Advisor, commented that “Supporting the younger generation as they make their first steps into the world of work is so important, providing everyone with the opportunity to find a fulfilling career, and breaking down perceived barriers and accessibility issues that might discourage application. This month’s activities were a great way to engage the potential next generation of construction workers!”.


North East

Kenton High School, Newcastle upon Tyne

7th May 2024
Aptus ConstructionRobertsonTilbury DouglasGraham Facilities Management

The North East & Yorkshire Collaborative Working Group, which consisted of Robertson, Tilbury Douglas, Graham Facilities Management and Aptus Construction came together in May to challenge Year 9 students of Kenton High School in Newcastle to think about careers in construction, whilst competing in a Green Living Challenge.
The team activity tasked students to look at the impact of housing developments on the environment and the community. The students got stuck into designing and producing a model layout of a sustainable mixed housing development, and a tender document to pitch their ideas to construction professionals and the rest of the year group.

Erin Collins from Kenton School said:

“I would like to thank you all again for providing a fantastic morning for our students. The task was pitched perfectly, and the students gained valuable insight into the construction industry. We appreciate the time and effort you all put into the organisation of the day.”

Social Value Measures achieved:

77 hours spent on local school and college visits with pupils, including preparation time.


North West

Greater Manchester

23rd May 2024
Bowmer and KirklandJohn Sisk and SonsWates ConstructionPP O’Connor

The North West Collaborative Working Group, which consisted of Bowmer and Kirkland, John Sisk and Sons, Wates Construction, and PP O’Connor came together to give a group of young people from the Greater Manchester Youth Network a tour of 2 construction sites and delivered presentations that focused on career pathways and opportunities within the construction Industry.
The visit started at the Etihad Campus, home of Manchester City FC, where Sisk delivered a major redevelopment of the stadium and surrounding area, including building a hotel, office blocks and a fan park. The young people were given a presentation and were able to see the plans for the scheme. This was followed by an insightful talk from PP O’Connor about demolition careers, and a visit to the Bowmer and Kirkland site in Ancoats, where Manchester’s first Mobility Hub is being built. Here, the group learned about the build with B&K apprentices and T-level students, and finished the day with a presentation from Wates on pathways into the industry.

Myrtle Finley, Training and Development Manager said:

“Staff have reported back that this was the best World of Work visit young people had attended – and the young people concurred that it was a really great day!”

Social Value Measures achieved:

32 hours of hours of career mentoring provided to unemployed people.



Staffordshire and Worcestershire

7th-15th May 2024
Tilbury Douglas ConstructionSpeller Metcalfe LtdVinci BuildingHiggins PartnershipsRhodar

The Midlands Collaborative Working Group, made up of Tilbury Douglas Construction, Speller Metcalfe Ltd, Vinci Building, Higgins Partnerships and Rhodar, created and delivered presentations about site safety and early careers information in sites across the Midlands, from the West Midlands to Staffordshire.
Taking place across a week of activity, these presentations were created collaboratively and delivered to SEND students, T-Level students and work experience placements, culminating in site tours in Worcestershire and Staffordshire.

Social Value Measures achieved:

23 hours spent on local school and college visits with pupils, including preparation time.


London and the South

London South East Colleges

26th May 2024
Conamar Building ServicesKier ConstructionEncon Construction

The Collaborative Working Group for London and the South, which included Conamar Building Services, Kier Construction and Encon Construction, engaged with London South East Colleges at Kier’s Construction Careers Hub, providing a specially designed careers workshop focused on engineering.
This included presentations from apprentices, specially created videos and an interactive bridge building activity, which was a great way of introducing students to the different roles available in construction.

Michelle Luckens, Senior Student Placement Officer, commented:

“The Kier Construction Careers Hub is an excellent opportunity for our students to learn from the experts and have access to Kier’s wealth of knowledge. We are excited for our students’ futures in construction and hope that they grab every opportunity open to them.”

Social Value Measures achieved:

21 hours spent on local school and college visits with pupils, including preparation time.