Andover Apprentice Rewarded by County CouncilApprentices and trainees, employed by Hampshire County Council as part of its Youth Investment Programme, have been recognised for their drive and commitment, at Hampshire’s first Investors in Young People Awards ceremony.

The new event – launched by the Chairman of Hampshire County Council, Councillor Colin Davidovitz, at its headquarters in Winchester – will be an annual celebration of the outstanding commitment apprentices, trainees and their managers, make to the ongoing work of the County Council.

Winners at this year’s ceremony were:

Sophie Hannington from Swaythling, winner of the Chairman’s Award, which recognises an outstanding contribution to the workplace. Sophie completed a traineeship and apprenticeship, before being employed in a permanent position as Finance Assistant in Property Services.

Gavin Brewer from Andover, winner of Level 3 Apprentice of the Year. Gavin works in the Highway Safety Engineering Team, and was awarded for his ability to work well with colleagues and contractors and his willingness to take on increasing responsibilities.

Sam Ballin, winner of Level 2 Apprentice of the Year, for his work at Calshot Activities Centre. Sam was recognised for his initiative, commitment and the personal progression he has made since beginning his role.

Amy Hicks from Alton, winner of Trainee of the Year. Amy works as a Day Care Assistant and was awarded for her dedication and her wonderful rapport with service users.

Two Hampshire employers, Capita and BAE Maritime Services, were also presented with awards for their commitment to supporting and developing young employees.

Councillor Davidovitz said: “All of the trainees and apprentices put forward for these awards have been rated highly, not only for the value of the work they have performed, but also for their positive attitude in making important contributions to the activities they have been engaged with and for some, for the variety extra-curricular activities they have undertaken on behalf of the County Council.

“There can be no better satisfaction than to enjoy and to succeed in the work you are doing and to have your achievements recognised by others. From reading the many award submissions, I can see that selecting just a handful of winners was a tough challenge. I congratulate all the nominees, and I sincerely hope that these awards can provide inspiration to the rest of our current, and future, apprentices and trainees.”

Councillor Peter Edgar, Executive Member for Education, said: “It is wonderful that we will have the opportunity to celebrate our young employees at this event each year, and I was thrilled to personally deliver the Level 2 Apprentice award to Sam for his outstanding work at Calshot Activities Centre. All of our apprentices and trainees show exceptional commitment to developing their workplace skills while studying towards industry standard qualifications, and I’m so pleased that we are able to provide opportunities that help our young people develop the skills they need for a career for life.

“Perhaps once considered the ‘poor relation’ for young people leaving education, the scope of opportunity for young people entering an apprenticeship is now far broader, and they are increasingly recognised as a valuable path for all levels of ability and ambition.”

The County Council has committed to provide 1,000 youth employment opportunities by 2018, including 850 apprenticeships and 150 traineeships. Currently 101 apprentices are employed by the County Council in roles which range from administration and catering, to countryside maintenance and engineering.

Anyone wishing to learn more about applying for apprenticeships, or employing apprentices, can visit www.hants.gov.uk/hantsfutures

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