A trio of ‘Pink Ladies’ in Southampton have had the chance to learn valuable construction skills and support their local community centre, during a week-long training course teaching useful DIY top tips.
The Pink Ladies Construction Course was run by Spectrum Western Challenge in conjunction with The Construction Youth Trust. Local residents Laura Nash, Nareika Marshall and Laura Goulding all took part in the bespoke course which was run by skilled tutor Rob Wright and held at Lordshill Community Centre. The course taught the young women how to perform a range of practical tasks including tiling, carpentry, painting and decorating, plumbing and electrics – giving the ‘Pink Ladies’ a good taste of many different trades.
Armed with distinctive pink hard hats and toolkits, the trio put their newly-acquired skills to the test by carrying out a number of tasks for the community centre itself, including tiling the centre’s kitchenette and making a faux fireplace which will now be used as a decorative centrepiece for the upcoming children’s Christmas party at the centre.
The course was designed with two aims: to give the trainees increased confidence in maintaining their own homes, and also to encourage young women to consider the construction industry as a possible career path.
“I took the course because it sounded really interesting and, because it was aimed just at ladies, I thought – why not?” said 21-year-old Nareika Marshall, who lives locally in Southampton. “I was already interested in construction before starting the week, and it was an amazing experience. I learnt lots, and because it was a small group I got just what I wanted from it”.
Anna Johnson, Resident Involvement Officer for Spectrum Western Challenge, supervised the course throughout the week. Anna said:
“We really wanted to show, through this course, that the construction industry is a viable career option for women as well as men.
I’m really pleased that all three ladies that took part have now applied to the Council’s sector-based work academy, where, if successful, they will receive career guidance, health and safety training, and the opportunity to undertake three week’s work experience on a building site.
The Pink Ladies construction course has been a big success this week. It’s been really worthwhile for the three ladies that attended, and everyone has learnt a lot of valuable practical skills, including myself!”
Western Challenge Housing Association, with its headquarters in Christchurch, Dorset, is part of Spectrum Housing Group. Western Challenge has over 7,000 homes in management across the South & South West of England and the Midlands. Its services are provided via its head office in Christchurch and regional offices in Bristol, Cheltenham, Exeter, Isle of Wight, Leicester, Poole and Reading.
Spectrum Housing Group comprises:
- Spectrum Medina
- Spectrum Signpost
- Spectrum Signpost Homes
- Spectrum Property Care
- Spectrum Western Challenge
- Spectrum Premier Homes
Spectrum Housing Group owns and manages over 18,000 homes throughout the South, South West and Midlands.
The Group’s vision is: “Great neighbourhoods, homes and services and a great place to work”.