Ealing school pupils gain work experience

Bellvue-pupils-placementTwo pupils of Belvue School, in Ealing, are learning about working life through a paid placement with Catalyst Housing.

The two month opportunity started in February and is with Catalyst’s Environmental Services team; who are responsible for cleaning, caretaking, gardening and clearing fly-tipping. The two pupils – Zain and Alex – are working alongside staff who mentor them on day-to-day work tasks, and they also have regular meetings with a senior manager to discuss how they are doing.

The Catalyst relationship with Belvue School came about following an introduction from resident board member Christina Tom-Johnson, who wanted the organisations to co-operate in providing work placements for pupils with a range of learning difficulties.

“I’m pleased that we have been able to offer Zain and Alex a full time paid placement.  Initially they are developing their gardening skills, but are also being given the opportunity to develop other skills and knowledge. We are keen to provide more opportunities for other pupils by developing our relationship with Belvue,” said Claire Demmel, Director of Environmental Services at Catalyst.

The Belvue School curriculum for 16 to 19-year-olds is designed to integrate them into the adult world of work and social opportunities.

“For many of the students social opportunities and work are a real challenge, which is why this project with Catalyst has been so important for us. We have taken a measured approach to the work assignments as the Catalyst teams needed to be sure that they had the capacity to support the students and the students themselves had to feel confident in their place of work. It has been a great a success and we hope to work with Catalyst on more social projects in the future,” said Simon Roberts, Head of Post-16 at Belvue School.