Pant yr Heol, Neath
The CITB-funded Women Construct Wales project supports women from a wide range of ages, backgrounds and circumstances to learn construction skills through the renovation of empty properties across South Wales.
This innovative project supports participants to develop the skills, knowledge and understanding required to progress into employment in the construction industry. Providing a pre-employment pathway through the renovation of properties, the project supports the development of women’s construction skills in an active, empathetic and supportive environment, free from intimidation and stigma.
Through supporting property renovation activities, individuals develop their employability, construction and enterprise skills, achieve accredited qualifications, experience work placements and move closer towards accessing sustainable employment or self-employment.
An empty property was purchased via auction during 2019 in Neath, South Wales. The 3-bed terraced property had been empty for a number of years and required full renovation to bring it back to a good living standard and be re-introduced to the housing market.
20 participants were referred to the project from a range of partner organisations including Chwarae Teg, Hafan Cymru, Calan DVS, Welsh Women’s Aid, Inspire Training and Communities4Work. The referrals were for women from a range of backgrounds, including those who were long-term unemployed, looking for a career change or in full-time employment, who all wanted to experience the construction environment and take their first steps into a potential new career.
Led by our female Project Construction Tutor the participants developed a wide range of skills in:
- Wall preparation
- Dry lining
- Painting & Decorating
- Kitchen fitting
- Bathroom fitting
Participants were also supported to achieve accredited qualifications, such as CITB H&S Awareness, and were supported to pass their CSCS test. Not only did the participants develop a range of skills and achieve qualifications, they also reported improvements in self-confidence, motivation and pride in being able to restore a property within their local community.
Upon renovation completion the property was marketed and sold within a few days, which was testament to the standard of our participants’ work. Funds raised from the sale of the property were re-invested into the purchase of the next property, supporting further skill development opportunities in our local communities.