Housing association Metropolitan has earned the Talent Match Mark Gold Award for its work supporting young people in Nottingham on their journey to securing employment.
The Talent Match Mark is an endorsement scheme run by the Big Lottery-funded employment programme Talent Match, and not-for-profit organisation Youth Employment UK. It celebrates organisations which create employment opportunities for young people, allowing them to explore and experience the world of work through placements and apprenticeships.
Metropolitan runs a number of employment initiatives, including its dedicated employment and training service Metroployment, and offers a range of apprenticeships and volunteering opportunities. Last year, the social landlord helped 580 people to gain employment and supported more than 350 into volunteering positions.
Clifton resident Lauren Pearson, 18, has just finished an apprenticeship in customer services at Metropolitan’s contact centre. She now works as an Income Officer at the organisation, and her work includes helping residents to manage their rent accounts. As part of her apprenticeship, she studied for a Level 2 National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) in customer services.
Lauren said: “After I left school, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I heard about the apprenticeship opportunities at Metropolitan, so I applied – I’d actually worked there as a student the previous summer, so I knew it was a nice place to work.
“The apprenticeship was hard work and stressful at times, but I got a lot of support from colleagues with both the day-to-day work side of things and the NVQ coursework.
“I’d advise others to definitely go for an apprenticeship because, if you work hard, it pays off in the long run – and it can open up so many opportunities.”
Jenny Danson, Executive Housing Services Director at Metropolitan, said: “As one of Nottingham’s largest providers of social housing, we’re thrilled to be recognised in this way. We’re a charitable organisation with a clear, defined and embedded purpose: to help people maximise their personal independence – and facilitating training and employment opportunities is a key part in achieving that.”
To find out more about apprenticeships and other employment opportunities at Metropolitan, visit: www.metropolitan.org.uk/work-with-us