Young customers heading in the right direction with YHN

Your Homes Newcastle is continuing to demonstrate its commitment to tackling youth unemployment in the city, appointing 10 of its young customers as part of an ongoing apprenticeship programme.

The apprenticeship programme has been developed to offer opportunities for young people who live in YHN homes, as youth unemployment nationally is at record levels and unemployment on social housing estates is statistically higher than the national average.

During the 12 month apprenticeship, the young people will work in key areas of the organisation including HR, customer involvement, organisational development, finance, investment delivery, housing management and for the Community Care Alarm Service.

They will also gain accredited qualifications including NVQs, key skills and technical certificate qualifications which will be delivered by Newcastle City Learning.

The new recruits are Lee Mole, Natasha Phillips, Ryan Park, Demi Connor, Shaun Garrett, Lewis Reed, Mohammed Rahman, Darren Cook and James Clarke. YHN is currently recruiting the 10th apprentice.
YHN developed its own recruitment process to take into account that many young people hadn’t applied for a job before and have little work experience.  The process was developed to make applying to YHN simpler for young people and to recognise potential that could be developed over the 52 weeks.

Stuart Campbell, Employability Manager at YHN, said:

“We are fully committed to helping our tenants and residents develop their skills and access employment opportunities. We realise that there is a higher than average unemployment rate on some of the estates that we manage and one of the ways we are looking to address this is through our apprenticeship programme.  Our aim is to give young people a great start in the world of work and the chance to develop a solid set of skills to build upon throughout their career.

“Finding employment, particularly in the current climate is particularly tough for young people and it is great to see the positive impact that our apprenticeship programme is having on the young people involved, our organisation and the communities we work within.”

Lee Mole, 19, from Walker is one of the apprentices taking part in the scheme. He approached his local housing office looking for employment after completing a work experience placement with YHN during his time at Longbenton Community College.

Lee Mole
Lee Mole
Lee said:

“I really enjoyed my placement at YHN’s Newcastle Furniture Service and felt really welcomed by the staff. When I completed my studies I found it difficult to find employment and really wanted to work with YHN again. After contacting my local housing office, I was told about the apprenticeship scheme and was the first successful applicant to be accepted on to the scheme last December.

“Since joining I’ve learned so much about the world of work, everything from answering telephones to the importance of being organised, and everyone around the office is really friendly.

“When I’ve completed the apprenticeship I really hope to be able to continue my working relationship with YHN, it’s been a pleasure working here and I’m really grateful for all the opportunities they’ve given me so far.”

Lewis Reed
Lewis Reed
Lewis Reed, 17 from Walkergate is completing his apprenticeship in HR. He added:

“It’s been great working with the other apprentices, we all get on really well and I’ve learned a lot in my time here. I left school last year and wanted to expand my CV so I’m really looking forward to gaining the NVQ when the apprenticeship is complete. This is my first experience of work and I’ve really enjoyed it.”