Y-Build was started by Reading YMCA as a pilot project in Spring 2013. The Y-Build project aims to support our local community by helping young people to build a better future for themselves through:
- Education – young people employed on our apprenticeship scheme complete at least an NVQ II and any relevant technical certificates in their chosen subject within the construction industry. This education includes completion of an on-site task book and formal day-release type education at local colleges.
- Experience – we offer paid apprenticeships working on our own construction and maintenance projects. In the future we hope to organise and support work placements with local businesses and trades.
- Personal development – we provide a mentor to overcome any personal challenges the young person may be facing
Since the start we have been working with five young people to focus on their goals, grow in confidence, establish contacts and take positive steps into their career. These five apprentices are employed directly by Y-Build and work on a variety of Y-Build construction and maintenance projects. Two of the apprentices are employed as carpentry apprentices, one is employed as a bricklaying apprentice, one as an electrical apprentice and the fifth is employed as a multi-trade apprentice.
The aims of the project are:
- to benefit the community be delivering long term work and life skills to 10 local young, disadvantaged people
- to help these young people to enjoy long term engagement both financially and socially within the community
- to give young people the opportunity to experience the reality of work through placements
- to deliver education and practical skills through education
- to provide the opportunity for young people to find sustainable employment, seeking apprenticeships where possible
- to work as part of an affordable house building project in the local community
Why the project is needed
Our project aims to address a whole range of issues facing the local community. These include:
- High levels of young people not in employment, education or training (NEET).
- Lack of opportunities for disadvantaged young NEETs to be supported back into education, training or employment – particularly those most disadvantaged and furthest from the workforce
- Substantial levels of disadvantage among our young service users, as a result of issues such as: learning difficulties, poor life skills, alcohol and drug abuse issues, lack of a supportive family, poverty, low emotional intelligence, low educational achievement, a history of anti-social behaviour and crime.
- Fragmented community with a lack of interaction between different generations, ethnicities and backgrounds.