Name of Company:Lakehouse Contracts
Programme Name:Lakehouse Legacy - Safety, Environmental & Careers in Schools
Staff in London:141
Lakehouse's program aims to work with at least 12 educational establishments each year and tackles three issues - Safety, Environment and Careers.
To promote Health and Safety, the project visits schools in the areas that Lakehouse work in order to raise awareness about the dangers of construction sites. The Environmental element is carried out in partnership with stakeholders to deliver a workshop program. For primary schools, the workshops involve 'Reducing your carbon footprint', 'Build your own Olympic village challenge', 'Recycling and school visits to the Essex Wildlife Centre. For secondary schools, Lakehouse run a two day 'Regeneration challenge' and a 'Carbon footprint workshop'.
The Careers element is made up of: offering mentoring in partnership with the Construction Industry Council; work experience; careers talks; support the development of the construction diploma; enterprise workshops; and offer jobs to young people excluded from school and young people leaving education.
Lakehouse's ethos has always been based on employing and adding value to the local community and this in turn has proved to be a selling point to clients. In 2005, as a result of a new business plan, a formal Corporate Responsibility policy was developed in consultation with the Staff Representative Group, clients and residents from the community. The project's focus on Health & Safety, Environmental and Careers in Construction was chosen for a number of reasons - firstly, to reduce incidents of trespass on Lakehouse's building sites, secondly because of the need to minimise the impact of construction activities on the environment and thirdly, to improve the prospects of young people leaving education.
Lakehouse's CEO has been instrumental in the growth of the project and attends monthly CSR meetings. The program is coordinated by a Corporate Responsibility Manager who reports on progress each month to the CSR group and Staff Representative Group. This includes progress towards targets and feedback from evaluation forms completed by teachers, staff, clients and students. The relevant section Managers are responsible for developing and delivering workshops, and for training other staff to deliver them.
Since April 2005, Lakehouse have visited 68 educational establishments. 14 Trainees have been recruited from the program including four young people who had been excluded from school. Lakehouse has also offered 22 work experience placements to students.
Lakehouse have seen a 23 percent increase in educational business since the project started, and staff satisfaction levels have increased nearly 20 percent in the same period.
"I had no idea Construction has so many well paid, professional opportunities. My impression was 'Bob the builder'!"
- Student from Plashet Girls School
"I was excluded from school last year and I am now back in school presenting to young people. I found the workplace a tough environment but with all the support Lakehouse has given me I had the confidence to go back to school and present"
- Carl, trainee