2017: An inspiring year of SCAPE activity for Kier Group
The past 12 months have certainly been busy for ourselves and SCAPE; not just with the projects we’ve delivered together, but also our work to engage with the communities we work in. During this year, a key theme we’ve focused on is motivating and inspiring young people into our industry.
With the built environment needing to develop its image and attract the next generation into the industry, one of our focuses this year has been on engaging with this audience. Much of this has been through our ‘Shaping Your World’ campaign, aimed at challenging industry perceptions and engaging with Generation Z (11-15 year olds) by showcasing the breadth of careers available in the built environment.
For example, our SCAPE team in Bridgwater ran a ‘Careers for All’ event, engaging with local school children aged 14-16, to show the different career paths within construction. And, in Banbury, our SCAPE team were exhibiting at the Banbury Big Bang Event, where over 1,000 5-16 year olds attended. We were on hand to discuss the industry with the pupils and showcase our Shaping Your World campaign. We even had iPads at the ready, helping the pupils create their VIBE avatars as part of the campaign.
Through our work on the SCAPE Minor Works framework this year, we have spoken to over 6,600 pupils, whether that be delivering special assemblies or burying time capsules on our sites, it has been a busy 2017 helping deliver a positive social impact in the communities we work.
Practical educational projects with schools have included building go-karts in Colney Hill in Gloucestershire. Two members of our site team spent the morning building go-karts with some of the school’s Year 4 pupils, who then road-tested them during a Race Day, where the karts were auctioned to raise money for their school. This activity was a great success and we received some fantastic feedback from the school teachers.
It’s not only schools that have benefited from our involvement in local communities through our SCAPE work - over 1,000 students from Higher or Further Education establishments have benefited from the educational aspects of our projects. Lisa Denby, an Assistant Site Manager on one of our SCAPE projects in Gloucestershire, returned to her former college to deliver a construction masterclass on her role and the industry as whole.
We’re also providing a live training opportunity for students on some of our SCAPE projects. For example, we're currently building a new training facility at West Lancashire College in Skelmersdale. As part of that, we’ve committed to providing work experience to those students on its bricklaying course. It’s a fantastic initiative and once the centre is handed over, the apprentices and students enjoying the facilities will be able to say ‘I built that’.
It is gratifying to review a year where so much progress has been made in helping young people experience a taste of the construction industry through our work with SCAPE. We look forward to continuing this work in 2018.
Michael EdwardsKier Framework Director
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