From education to employment

Local teenager “loving” work experience scheme following CACT-Andrews Sykes partnership

“Every day I come in and learn something new”, says Callum Wallace, aged 17, from Woolwich.

Andrews Sykes and Charlton Athletic Community Trust (CACT) have enjoyed a fantastic relationship for quite some time and have announced the extension of the partnership for another two years.

The latest agreement sees Andrews become an employability patron for CACT going forward, providing the organisation with an excellent opportunity to give something back to the community.

Jason Morgan MBE, CACT’s Chief Executive, said:

“CACT has had a long relationship with Andrews and we’ve been very grateful for their support on a number of events and projects over the years. We’re so pleased they have now come on board as a CACT patron. The focus on employability is a great fit between CACT’s Education programme and Andrews’ ethos, and will make a real difference to the young people we work with.”

This arrangement will see Andrews create opportunities for local young people to undertake work placements at its Charlton depot, learn new skills in a variety of environments and receive interview training.

The first beneficiary of the scheme – CACT Trainee Callum Wallace, from Woolwich – has undertaken a number of roles within the business during a placement spanning many weeks.

Callum said:

“I enrolled on a programme with Charlton Athletic Community Trust along with other young people and was then given the opportunity to gain some experience at a local company.

“I’ve always wanted to be an engineer and that hasn’t changed. I’d say that my first taste of being in a workshop has actually made me even more determined to make it happen. I’m loving it.

“I’ve been working out in the yard, directing people on the forklifts, assisting the pump engineers and even got involved in some risk assessment stuff. But the thing I’ve enjoyed the most is stock-taking. It’s been my favourite thing so far, which I didn’t expect.

“Every day I come in and learn something new, which has been great for me. I like the fact that my day is structured.”

Callum began a traineeship with CACT earlier this year.

In recent years, Andrews Sykes have taken on permanent members of staff as a direct result of its association with CACT and it is likely that additional full-time roles will be available in future.

Mark Page, Southern Regional Director at Andrews Sykes, said:

“At the recent CACT partners’ reception held at The Valley it was a privilege to hear from some of the young people who have been able to benefit from the great work carried out by CACT. Now as a CACT patron, we at Andrews Sykes are looking forward to being fully involved in the CACT Education programme.”

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