Published March 12, 2015 at 14:32
Blackburn with Darwen Council has reaffirmed its commitment to helping young people find employment during National Apprenticeship Week (March 9 -13).
This year the Council is looking to recruit seven apprentices now and a further 20 in the summer.
The vacancies, all advertised on the Council website, include Apprentice Receptionist, Customer Service Apprentice, Town Centre and Market Operations Apprentice, three Lifeguard Apprentice and Gym Instructor Apprentice.
In 2011, the Council started taking on apprentices, with six involved in the first pilot. It was so successful that its annual programme was launched. Since then it has taken on a further 55 apprentices.
As part of the scheme, two year contracts are offered to local young people, either Blackburn with Darwen residents or school leavers aged 16 – 24.
The Council pays National Minimum Wage for age, considerably more than National Apprenticeship Wage and apprentices are based across all departments of the Council.
Councillor Kate Hollern, leader of Blackburn with Darwen Council, said:
Even though we face tough choices at the Council, our commitment to supporting a high quality apprenticeship programme remains strong.
Chief executive Harry Catherall added:
We have a talented, young population in Blackburn with Darwen and having a steady flow of apprentices helps keep the organisation fresh.
Young people get the chance to gain work experience and recognised qualifications, e.g, AAT, IT, Construction and the Built Environment, Business Admin, Professional Cookery, Health and Social Care, Early Years, and many more.
The Council mainly works with local training providers Blackburn College and Training 2000 but also has apprentices at Manchester College and Tangerine PR.
The Council’s current apprentices are also marking the national week by meeting up with and shadowing Council directors.