Dandara trains groundworkers

Tuesday 9th August 2022 4:54 am
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A property developer is training more people to become groundworkers as the construction industry continues to face labour shortages.

Groundworkers prepare the ground before, during and after building.

A two-year training programme has been set up by Dandara’s health and safety advisor, Grant Howard.

The programme, which is accredited by industry awarding body GQA Qualifications, with support from the Department of Education, Sport and Culture, and ‘BuildASkill’ in Ramsey, is already paying dividends with a second intake of students due to start this month.

Mr Howard said: ‘Groundworkers are vital to our industry and it is a highly skilled trade yet, despite growing demand for labour in the sector, there has been a real lack of quality training available within this field of construction.

‘Just as there are recognised apprenticeship schemes for engineering, bricklaying and motor mechanics, there also needs to be an industry standard equivalent for trainee groundworkers which is why we decided to address this with the creation of our bespoke training programme.

‘Starting with a blank canvas we developed a syllabus which I am glad to say has proved so popular that we have increased the number of available places, and our five initial trainees are soon to be joined by a further four.’

The programme, which has been approved as a recognised NVQ (National Vocational Qualification) Level 2, will also help equip those who are new to the industry with the qualifications they need.

‘It is a real partnership involving organisations dedicated to providing practical based training to fill the skills gap. To receive government endorsement and the support of BuildASkill, who we work closely with, is a real investment for the future.’

Over two years and various modules, the trainees are allocated a mentor for specific training in the workplace, during which time they have to demonstrate their ability to perform an array of jobs safely and in an effective and efficient manner.

So, what difference will it make?

‘Well, it provides them with a set of highly valuable skills and a recognised qualification which is also something to fall back on if they decide to pursue a different career path,’ added Mr Howard.

‘At the same time, it addresses the general shortage in specialist areas and offers a real opportunity in a highly skilled area of the industry whilst expanding the island’s skills base.

‘We welcome anyone who is thinking about a career in construction, whether they’ve just left school or are thinking of a career switch, to get in touch.’

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