Sackers Recycling, Ipswich, England, is partnering with Inspire Suffolk's Step Up program to provide young adults between the ages of 16 to 24 an opportunity to gain industry training and qualifications. The two-week course is designed to be a “steppingstone into employment” by gaining experience and skills young adults can use to apply for jobs in their desired field, Sackers says in a news release.
Sackers employed three of the five young adults who earned their certificate through the scrap training course.
“This was very new to us, and it was more successful than we could have ever expected it to be,” says Kevin Harrington, compliance manager at Sackers who oversaw the training. “We had a good caliber of students all willing to learn and were reliable and engaged. I was really impressed.”
A 20-year-old will be starting in the metal shred department, learning about “metal types and dealing with customers” who bring their metal scrap to Sackers for recycling. A 21-year-old will start working on the metals picking and sorting line. The other graduate, who is 21, will go on to a Level 3 Apprenticeship.
“I had confidence that if I worked hard, I might get a position here,” one of the new young employees says.
The young adults completed the full course after they completed training at Sackers, which included the Sackers Think Smart plan that covers health and safety, asbestos awareness and hand and eye protection combined with practical training in the scrap yard. The practical training covers dealing with end-of-life vehicles, which involves depolluting them, removing fluids, including oil, petrol and water and stripping wheels, catalytic converters and batteries. They also had training in metal shedding.
“Recruiting is hard at the moment, so it’s important that we invest in giving these young adults opportunities to grow ad support them into careers,” says Adrian Dodds, managing director at Sackers. “We are lucky that we have a varied business that allowed them to try different areas and we could see where their skills were.”
Step Up has provided courses in health care, construction, hospitality and retail.
Garry Mills, education program manager at Step Up, adds, “We have run many of these courses in different sectors, but this is the first time we’ve delivered a scrap training program. Sackers have worked closely with us to deliver great training for those on the two-week experience. We are so proud of what these students have achieved and couldn’t ask for a better outcome.”
Sackers was established in 1920. Scrap metal is sorted in Great Blakenham and scrap recycling is done in Needham Market. The business recycles more than 90 percent of all scrap that enters the facility.