A dozen apprentices start at believe housing as association doubles intake

Oct 17, 2022 | Local News

County Durham-based believe housing has taken on twice as many apprentices as it planned to this year – because the applicants were just too good to turn away.

When the housing association launched its most recent apprenticeship recruitment drive a record 266 people applied for a role.

More than 100 of the applicants were invited to selection open days and recruiters were so impressed they decided to create 12 roles instead of six.

This month, the successful candidates began their apprenticeships with believe housing’s award-winning Property Repairs Team.

At the end of a packed first week of induction activities and teambuilding, the apprentices visited believe housing’s allotment in Seaham to plant a ‘class of 2022 time capsule’ containing their photos and career aspirations for the next five years.

Nik Turner, Executive Director of Communities and Customer Services at believe housing, said: “We’re delighted to welcome these apprentices to our team, they’ve made a fantastic achievement to get from hundreds of applicants to the final 12.

“They’ll have challenging times and exciting times ahead; make new friends and get the support they need throughout their training to go on to enjoy great careers.

“We are passionate about supporting talent and rewarding hard work at believe housing, which helps us live up to our values to ‘do the right thing for our people, for our customers, for our business’.”

The 12 apprentices join a 210-strong Property Repairs Team, which was named Best Repairs and Maintenance Team at the 2022 Northern Housing Awards.

Each will have a specialist role as a gas engineer, electrical engineer, plasterer or joiner. They will also spend time with different teams to broaden their skills and experience, alongside studying at Hartlepool College.

Rachel Cox, Director of Property Repairs at believe housing, said: “We’re passionate about developing our team and supporting new people through our apprenticeships.

“Each apprentice has a mentor who put themselves forward to help, because they see the potential in our apprentices, and they want to support their future.

“I believe these talented and enthusiastic young people are the future of our industry, and I thank them for choosing us.

“The purpose of our team is to ensure our homes are comfortable, maintained and safe for people to live in and, like everyone here, the apprentices will put customers at the heart of everything they do.”