Tideway, the company building London’s super sewer, is helping people leaving prison to gain jobs in the construction industry by supporting the work of a number of London charities.
There are more than 11 million people with a criminal record in the UK, around one fifth of the working population. Research has found that many of them find it almost impossible to get a job – with just 17% in P45 employment a year after release.
Tideway’s latest commitment to the Hardman Trust will support six to eight Londoners through the Tideway Awards, providing tools or training courses. The trust works with people whilst they are still in prison to prepare for life on release, developing a plan to get and sustain employment and offering financial assistance to turn the plan into reality.
Each individual that receives support through the awards will get tailored one-to-one support on release from prison, to help them stick to their plan and overcome any obstacles that arise as they start their new life.
Kerryn Wotton, CEO of The Hardman Trust, said: “So many of the people we work with are eager to enter the world of construction and just need a helping hand to make this happen. We are really excited to get to work on this – thanks to Tideway for their belief in our work and their support in making it happen.”
Tideway has set targets for employing people with convictions on the project and has partnered with charities such as Bounce Back and Key4Life, running staff volunteering sessions focussed on confidence, CV writing and interviewing. It has also signed up to the Ban the Box campaign which removes questions on previous convictions from application forms.
Kelly Bradley, Tideway’s Community Investment Manager, said: “Helping people with convictions gain experience and skills has been a key part of the approach to our legacy since we started work on the super sewer.
“I’m pleased that we’re continuing in our support with these three new partnership commitments and am looking forward to seeing the benefits of these programmes.”
Tideway is working with the Hardman Trust, alongside another two charities to support its legacy work, in partnership with the Corbett Network, which is backing programmes aimed at providing skills and opportunities to people with convictions. The other supported charities are:
- Onwards & Upwards, a charity which aims to break the cycle of reoffending by training prison leavers to become bike mechanics with XO Bikes in Lewisham.
- The Moving on Project run by Employment 4 All, which supports women leaving HMP Downview by developing soft skills and help address other issues women face when leaving prison. The programme also helps young men and women who attend assessment centres on Saturdays to gain employment.