Ladder for the Black Country: Healthy start to a bright career for youngsters thanks to apprenticeships

From healthcare assistants to business administrators, more than 100 NHS apprenticeships are up for grabs, thanks to the Ladder for the Black Country.

Ladder for the Black Country: Healthy start to a bright career for youngsters thanks to apprenticeships

Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust has signed up to the Express & Star-led apprenticeship campaign to offer the roles to youngsters across the region.

Delivered by the trust's Learning Works team, the apprenticeships are a 12 month programme of learning and on the job training. Positions include healthcare and theatre assistants, business administrators, ward services officers, medical equipment engineers and roles in the estates team.

The move brings the total number of apprenticeships created by the Ladder for the Black Country to more than 650.

The campaign partners include the Express & Star, training provider PTP, the Vine Trust charity and the Black Country Chamber of Commerce. It was launched in September to help tackle the problem of youth unemployment in the region.

Rob Colbourne, managing director of PTP said: "It is fantastic news that Sandwell and West Birmingham Trust are supporting the Ladder. This latest employer pledge takes us past 650 jobs and is still gathering momentum which is a credit to all partners and the efforts that have gone into the Ladder initiative."

Altogether more than 7,000 staff, work at Sandwell General Hospital, Birmingham City Hospital and Rowley Regis Hospital.

Jim Pollitt, associate director of learning and development at the trust, said: "With over 400 different job roles available within the trust, it's far from being simply a place where doctors and nurses go to work. We rely on thousands of other people – be they scientific staff, manual workers, porters, drivers, caterers, construction workers, clerical or professional staff – to keep our essential services running, and to benefit the community as a whole.

"The trust is fully aware of its social responsibilities beyond clinical care. Tackling unemployment, social deprivation, and promoting regeneration are just as important within the community."

Through the apprenticeships, he said, the trust was "effectively investing in future generations of its own workforce, from the very community that it serves."

Deputy editor Diane Davies said: "So far 115 employers have agreed to take on apprenticeships through the Ladder for the Black Country and hundreds of young people have turned to the campaign to help them onto a career path.

"We continue to be delighted by the support of firms and organisations such as the hospitals trust and would urge all in the local business community to take on even just one apprentice and give one young person a bright future."

The campaign is also asking young people to make the most out of the opportunities being created.

  • Firms and potential apprentices can call 03332 409 699, or go to ladder fortheblackcountry.co.uk

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