SUEZ & The Harlequins Foundation preparing young people for work

Resource and waste management company, SUEZ, has marked the start date for the next group of young people taking part in its employability and work experience programme, in partnership with The Harlequins Foundation (THF).

Last year SUEZ announced its partnership with THF to offer a practical approach to work experience for young people, with a guaranteed interview at the end of the rotation.

The programme has been designed to engage young people aged 16 –24 who are not in education, employment or training (NEET), offering them a practical approach to joining the workforce, and setting them on the path to a brighter future. Each year, there will be four groups of young people who will spend four weeks on the programme.

The group will spend two weeks on a rotation with SUEZ gaining essential skills from across multiple departments and sites, including Transport Avenue in West London, and the Surrey Eco Park facility. The programme will include an introduction to the waste industry, job shadowing, weighbridge operations, transport operations, maintenance, material flow, administration and recycling operations.

Michael Pusey, Regional Director, SUEZ recycling and recovery UK, said: “We’re delighted to be welcoming the next round of cohorts through the HITZ programme. Through our ongoing partnership with The Harlequins Foundation, we look forward to making a positive impact on the next generation of talent, and the communities and businesses around London and the South-East which we serve.

We are passionate about leaving a positive impact on our environment and our communities, and hope that through this partnership we can inspire the next generation to consider career opportunities and green jobs that help build a more sustainable future for the UK.”

This is a fantastic programme which offers NEET young people a great opportunity to gain practical work experience.

Stevie Warr, Skills Manager at The Harlequins Foundation said: “This is a fantastic programme which offers NEET young people a great opportunity to gain practical work experience. The rotation gives them the chance to experience all the departments within SUEZ, and the week they spend with the team at The Stoop supports them to develop Essential Skills such at communication, teamwork and listening – skills everyone needs to succeed in life.”

The new follows recent CIWM research which called on the UK government to provide additional support to address the rapidly expanding skills and labour shortage in the resource and waste sector.

The Beyond Waste: Essential Skills for a Greener Tomorrow, estimates that existing policy and the more sustainable use of resources will create over 74,200 new roles in the waste and resources sector by 2030. This figure is set to rise to an aggregate of 240,000 new roles by 2040.

CIWM says a range of different methods were used to collate the necessary evidence, views, and informed estimates contained within Beyond Waste: Essential Skills for a Greener Tomorrow. These approaches included a workforce survey, structured interviews, a wide-ranging literature review and workshop feedback sessions with members of CIWM.

Commenting on its call for action, CIWM’s Professional Services Director, Katie Cockburn, said: “The transition to a greener, more circular economy is not optional if we are to save our planet and unlock the economic and social potential of green growth.

“The UK waste and recycling sector is central to achieving this aim but, without additional support, we’ll be unable to resource our services with the right people, with the right skills, at the right time.”

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