MITIE has won two Business in the Community awards for its Real Apprentice scheme. The scheme won the ‘innovation’ and ‘large company’ categories in the UK leg of the BITC’s European Volunteering Awards and will now go forward to the Europe-wide competition.
The Real Apprentice scheme works to help people of all ages and backgrounds get back into work through placements both at MITIE and with its clients. With support from mentors, the ‘apprentices’ get the opportunity to work in a number of different roles.
The programme is designed to break down barriers that people face when they’re looking for employment. With the help of mentors from both MITIE and its clients, the Real Apprentices get the opportunity to work in a number of different roles.
Since the start of the scheme in 2005, 197 people have taken part, with 134 Real Apprentices completing the programme and 97 of those being offered permanent jobs, both at MITIE and with other employers in London and Glasgow. Plans to extend the scheme to other regions are underway following its success.
Jane James, employment regeneration director at MITIE, said: "We are delighted to be awarded the European Employee Volunteering Award UK. The Real Apprentice scheme gives people from all walks of life the opportunity and support to achieve their goals. Not only is there a social and moral case for working together to make a difference to peoples’ lives, there is a solid business case. The Real Apprentice is about people helping people, and we encourage all individuals and organisations to get involved."
Stephen Howard, CEO of Business in the Community, said: "Businesses can play a valuable role in supporting those who face multiple barriers to work in getting back into the workplace. This is good for society and for business. I would like to congratulate MITIE Group for winning the UK leg of these awards and wish them the best of luck against their European counterparts. In turn I hope others will be inspired to increase and improve their level of activity during the European Year of Volunteering."