The Aspire Group has demonstrated its commitment to creating apprenticeships in housing by recently taking on its 300th apprentice.
Aspire Housing manages 9,000 homes in Staffordshire and Cheshire, and it bought PM Training in 2008 in order to help young people into work.
Since then, PM Training has trebled in size and has helped thousands of 16-19 year olds get jobs with more than 900 companies throughout Staffordshire.
In the last five years, this has been the route into employment for 300 young people who have become apprentices at the Aspire Group. At any one time, apprentices make up 10% of the workforce.
17-year-old Georgia Robson is the Aspire Group’s 300th apprentice. She is employed in the painting and decorating team, working on some of Aspire Housing’s 9,000 properties.
Georgia said: “At PM Training, they take you through a series of tasters of different courses to see what you have a knack for.
“That really helped me to figure out what I wanted to do.
“Since then, I haven’t looked back. My apprenticeship in painting and decorating has helped me develop my skills.
“Any given week could see me with a couple of other learners and our supervisor either renovating existing Aspire Housing properties, or decorating new builds for the first time.
“I can do anything from sanding down and applying undercoats, to intricate gloss work or painting walls and ceilings.
“The feeling of seeing the job finished, and finished well, is really rewarding.”
PM Training provides work opportunities to 16 – 18 year olds in Staffordshire through apprenticeships, pre-apprenticeship study programmes, traineeships, vocational training and industry work experience.