A group of young people are getting sorted at Weston Mill and Chelson Meadow Recycling Centres as apprentices.
Nine apprentices are now learning the ropes at both sites as part of an apprenticeship run by the charity, Groundwork, in conjunction with City College Plymouth. And a further eight will be starting at Chelson Meadow Recycling Centre in a few weeks time.
Apprentices will be working towards the Intermediate Level Apprenticeship in Sustainable Resource Management and this group is the second set of apprentices to go through the scheme.
Sue Reed, Head of Work-based Learning and School Partnerships at City College Plymouth said: “I am delighted to be working with Groundwork to support their workforce development via apprenticeships. Apprenticeships are a great way for businesses to develop existing staff, especially those in management positions or newly appointed.
“We have already successfully trained Groundwork staff through this apprenticeship programme and I look forward to supporting the Council in partnership with Groundwork employees in the future.”
Councillor Brian Vincent, Cabinet Member for the Environment, said: “This has been a huge success. Hands-on experience is so important for young people and this scheme shows that getting the opportunity to learn on the job pays real dividends.
“Other young people who were on the scheme previously have gone on to join the army, become building workers or warehouse operatives.”
Council leader Tudor Evans added: “This is a great scheme and I’m delighted that we’ve been able to help another set of young people get on the work ladder.
This project provides hugely important work experience. As a city we are working extremely hard to ensure the next generation of our workforce have the skills and enthusiasm that employers need and the best way to achieve that is on the job.”
Nigel Stockdale, Operations manager at Groundwork said: “This has proved a very successful course. Waste is big business but importantly, this opportunity gives youngsters a taste of following instructions, customer care as well as building up work skills.”
The group work closely with the Council’s recycling team as part of their training, resulting in a cleaner site, better services and an eight per cent increase in the amount of waste channelled into reuse and recycling.
In 2012 staff and apprentices were shortlisted for the Civic Amenity Site of the Year Award, at the Awards for Excellence in Recycling and Waste Management
The centre on Weston Mill Road is open between 9.30am to 5pm seven days a week and until 6pm from 1 March