Developing the Young Workforce

Written By elderpark_fiona

Work Aware – Elderpark Housing Association

About the business:

Elderpark Housing Association was formed in 1975 to provide high-quality affordable housing to those most in need and to improve the lives of people living in the wider Govan area, and is a social housing provider operating in one of the most deprived areas in Scotland.

EPH has maintained its focus as a community-led social landlord operating within a defined geographic boundary. While our core activities are the provision, management and maintenance of social rented homes, we are committed to our ‘wider role’ as an engine for the regeneration of the local area. The Association works with community partners to support, promote, develop and deliver a wide range of services and initiatives that will benefit all Elderpark residents, irrespective of tenure.

Our Mission is to provide quality, affordable homes and excellent services that place a focus on our customers and enhance our communities.

We have developed five key strategic objectives for the period 2018-2021 which will focus on the following key themes:

  • Modern, innovative and forward-thinking services
  • Sound corporate governance and financial management
  • Strong asset management to invest in our current and new homes
  • Partnership working with other agencies
  • Maximise the talent and engagement of our staff and committee

Why was the Work Aware programme of interest to you?

We are committed to supporting young people, the young voice, youth training and employment and youth mental health and wellness. I have worked with DYW since 2018 across several different organisations and Elderpark Housing has committed to continue supporting our youth offer with external partners.

What activities have pupils undertaken during your Work Aware programme? Have you seen any changes in young people from start to finish?

We have sought to make the day as fun and informative as we can. Working with FARE Scotland, we structure the day around three objectives:

  1. Young people learn something about our business
  2. Young people laugh, ask questions and share life experiences
  3. Young people eat!

The day looks at our business – both from an operational perspective and an actual walk around – we then talk about my role and what I do in community regeneration, we undertake an ice breaker activity and look to open up communication. We then finish the session with a hot lunch and take away food for that evening.

What has been the highlight of your business’ Work Aware experience?

I think for me it is investing something in these young people. The food and the information is a really important part of that investment – but we have been really keen to talk ‘with’ the young people and not at them. I encourage honest debate – whilst setting very basic boundaries for us to operate in. I really enjoy when a group asks me about my life and what I do and how I live, why I do the job I do and what will I do in the future. I honestly believe that there is a large part of this process that invests in me as an individual – adding to my professional skills and reminding me why working with young people is so important. It’s very humbling.

What about the Work Aware programme would you recommend to other businesses?

We all have a duty to invest in and support the development of our young people. Organisations and businesses would be crazy not to undertake this opportunity to ‘pitch’ our businesses to the workers of the future! Morally, we also all have a duty to do all we can to empower young people and help them to make choices that will better their lives and futures.

What value do you feel that Work Aware and DYW in general can bring to your organisation?

The relationship allows us to ‘shop window’ our business and encourage young people to consider social housing as an amazing opportunity to create a lasting, interesting and vibrant career.

Quote from employer

“Elderpark Housing Association considers careers in housing to be a rewarding and immensely fulfilling choice for young people who are passionate about working within a socially conscious environment. We are strongly committed to delivering, with our partners, a workplace experience which provides a crucial insight into the work we do.”

Gary Dalziel, Chief Executive, Elderpark Housing

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