Solihull NEETs see Prince’s Trust investment go full-circle
Tuesday, 25 February, 2014

A local company funded by national royal charity The Prince’s Trust, are returning their initial investment to the Midlands economy by taking on their first-ever apprentices- who have just completed the Prince’s Trust Team programme at Solihull College.

Community-interest company Gro-Organic CIC have created apprenticeship positions for 17-year-old Shaun Cahill and 18-year-old Emily Tooth. In addition, 17-year-old Jordan Gillard has been taken on as a volunteer; he has also recently completed the Prince’s Trust Team programme at the College. By engaging with disadvantaged young people throughout Birmingham and the West Midlands, the Solihull College Prince’s Trust Team programme helps three-in-four young people into an apprenticeship, education, employment or training.

Focusing on urban regeneration, Gro-Organic CIC champion community projects and sustainability across Birmingham. They received funding in 2010 from the Prince’s Trust Enterprise Programme, Company Director Sarah Gill comments: “€œI am a big supporter of the charity, in what they do and how they help young people and if it wasn’t for the Prince’s Trust my company may not be here today. I am really pleased to be able to offer these opportunities to these students in not only giving them their next step, but also some hope for their futures”.

Gro-Organic CIC is rooted in improving local environmental areas by working alongside schools, charities and businesses, including the College’s Prince’s Trust Team programme. They have recently helped students with a number of Community Projects including the improvement of green space for residents living in Smith’s Wood.

From studying Level 2 Horticulture through the College, Gro-Organic CIC is offering new apprentice Shaun the opportunity to develop into a qualified landscape gardener. Shaun comments: “€œI had always enjoyed gardening and did some landscape work with my Dad, so getting a placement with Gro-Organic in my 12-week Prince’s Trust course was great. I am delighted I have got an apprenticeship with Gro-Organic. I am so grateful to the Prince’s Trust for what they have done to help me get started into work”.

Nationally, The Prince’s Trust helps 55,000 disadvantaged young unemployed people every year. Solihull College has been a delivery partner with The Prince’s Trust for 18 years and works closely with West Midlands Police, Birmingham City FC and other local companies to help enrich the 12-week programme for local young people.

Chris Brueton, Prince’s Trust Coordinator at Solihull College comments: “€œIt is fantastic that Gro-Organic have created openings for our students; companies greatly benefit from providing employment opportunities to young people on work placement to see whether students have the right attitude and skills. Each stage of the Prince’s Trust Team programme develops workplace skills and in particular the work placement weeks provide a great opportunity for our young people to have realistic work experience”.

To find out more about the 12-week Prince’s Trust Team programme at Solihull College please visit our Prince’s Trust web page or call 0121 678 7000