Joanna Pengilley

Apprentices are ‘really beneficial’ to employers to give a ‘fresh viewpoint’

A Centre Manager from a charity has said it is ‘great’ to have apprentices on board who can ‘offer an insight’ into working with young people.

Joanna Pengilley, Centre Manager for young people’s charity Creative Youth Network, has said it is incredibly effective to take on young apprentices in their workplace and aligns with their ‘whole ethos and value’.

Among Creative Youth Network’s apprentices, City of Bristol College student Emily Parker works as a centre assistant.

Joanna said: “It is really beneficial as it is a new and fresh viewpoint which helps us to see if we are meeting the challenges that young people face today.

Joanna hopes Creative Youth Network will be able to take more apprentices on in the future, with a number of roles being ‘set up to offer apprentices a great flavour’ of the charity.

She added: “It seems to me, with the popularity and success of the Government’s Kickstart scheme, we should probably look at some other roles which could be made apprentice roles throughout the organisation and help support even more young people.”

When an employer takes on an apprentice through the College, we make sure to assign an assessor to each apprentice who not only supports the learner in the classroom setting but also works with the employer and learner in the workplace to benefit both parties.

Joanna added: “The assigned assessor from the College has been with us every step of the way, offering advice and guidance and signposting with other departments where necessary. Having a dedicated assessor is crucial. The structure of the course has to fit in with the organisational aims and objectives and this has been key to the success. Liz (Emily’s assessor) is a wonder and really helps the apprentice to ‘help themselves’ rather than being spoon-fed, which is a great teaching method. We look forward to her visits.”

Apprentices can gain ‘really valuable real-life experience’ with placements at charity organisations like Creative Youth Network. Joanna praised apprenticeships as a route which helps learners gain knowledge, skills and experience, structure and qualifications, all while earning a wage which is invaluable.

Find out more about how taking on an apprentice could benefit your business and the apprenticeship levy.

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