Working in the construction sector

Our last group of 2020 trainees are moving on from the Centre for Excellence to start their work placements.

Work placements are a vital part of all our training courses. They enable trainees to gain further practical experience, as well as developing valuable contacts for future work.

This area of work is led by our Relationship Manager, Clayton Kachamba and Work Placement Officer, Mildred Tembo.

Clayton explains the approach we take: “We look for contractors that support skills training, that have a genuine interest in supporting young people. They need to be able to offer relevant experience to our trainees so they can practise and expand their skills.

In return, they get disciplined and skilled workers, who quickly become independent and need little supervision.”

As well as setting up all the placements, Clayton and Mildred undertake regular monitoring visits. This is an opportunity to catch up with both trainees and the contractors to see how the placements are progressing.

Clayton and Mildred

Clayton and Mildred on their way down to Livingstone to support placements for trainees at Katombora Reform School

“The pandemic has had an impact on the timings of work placements,” says Mildred.

“Our 2020 training programme was delayed by four months due to lock-down. This meant that some trainees were not ready to move onto their placements until the rainy season. This was not ideal as construction work is much quieter at this time of year.”

“The economic impact of the pandemic has led to some organisations rethinking their priorities” adds Clayton.

“Some commercial construction projects have been halted and not yet restarted. At a domestic level, some residential work has been disrupted as people have less money to spend on building works.”

But despite the challenges, we continue building strong relationships across the construction sector. These are opening up opportunities for both our trainees, and our graduates. In 2020 we received 189 requests for graduates, up from 126 requests in 2019 showing a growing presence in the construction sector.

“We’ve seen lives being transformed, young people being empowered. And construction companies are benefiting from trained workers and greater efficiency on their work sites.”

If you would like to find out more, please contact our Affiliate Relations Team on +260 976 165 629 / +260 973 105 052, or +260 211 267 715.