Building Lives Academy in session

Theatre Construction partners putting locals in work

Published: 1 December 2022
Filed under: Jobs, training and skills

Willmott Dixon Interiors are the Council’s construction partner on the Soho Theatre Walthamstow rebuild. As part of their work on the project, they have committed to add what’s known as ‘social value’ to the community around the building site, either as a direct or indirect result of the construction work.

One of the ways Willmott Dixon Interiors has contributed to its local area has been to create new jobs for local people. It has put 41 Waltham Forest residents into work, with a commitment to create another 14 jobs during the building work.

Its Building Lives Academy was set up to offer entry-level routes into the construction industry. The programme connects participants not only with Willmott Dixon Interiors but also its supply chain and partners. Below you can read about three of these newly employed people.

Fabio Freire: Fabio was unemployed for over 12 months before enrolling to participate in the Building Lives Academy. Fabio speaks very highly about the programme and says he truly enjoyed his experience, after which he found employment with a London property services company.

Gerardina Sarcone: Gerardina was unemployed for six months before enrolling onto the Building Lives Academy programme. She said she overcame multiple barriers to the industry with the help of the coaching and mentoring aspects of the programme, and the ability to network with construction professionals. Since the academy experience, she has registered with a construction agency and found work locally in Waltham Forest.

Joshua Opoku: Joshua has said that the Building Lives course helped him plan, stay focused, and create professional CV, crediting the programme’s taught interview techniques and mock interviews. The real value for Josh in this programme was not just finding employment, but also opportunity and structure to progress.  After being unemployed for over 12 months before he started the academy, Joshua obtained work with a local provider once he’d finished the course and achieved his certificates and CSCS card.