The housing association recently won an award for an apprentice recruitment campaign to address inequality in the housing sector and its workforce. It’s now up for two more awards including Apprentice Development Award in recognition of its commitment to apprenticeship development; and Apprentice of the Year for apprentice carpenter Luke Naish, who’s currently in the Philippines helping to rebuild communities after the devastation wreaked by Hurricane Hyian.
Merlin’s Managing Director, and Apprentice Ambassador for the West of England Apprenticeship Ambassador Network, Winston Williams said: “It’s great to be recognised for our commitment to developing and recruiting apprentices.
“Earlier this year we won a prestigious award for our efforts to address inequality in the sector. Our objective was to increase the number of apprentice applications from black minority ethnic groups, women in the building sector, and people with disabilities. Which we did, we saw an increase in applications across the board, and nearly 30% were from these groups.
“We’ve now been recognised for our commitment to apprenticeship development and our on-going programme of recruitment and training. And apprentice carpenter Luke Naish, is also up for honours as Apprentice of the Year.
“As the largest social landlord in South Gloucestershire we have a responsibility to tackle unemployment in the communities we serve which is why we’re not just taking on our own apprentices, but funding apprenticeships with local organisations and suppliers too. We’re also supporting Inside Housing’s Homes Work campaign.”
Merlin’s current workforce is made up of 5% apprentices and it’s committed to providing at least ten apprentice opportunities each year. It’s also funded three apprentices for community organisations and has plans to sponsor more through its supply chain.