Novus apprentices make homeless shelter feel like home

  16 AUGUST, 2017
Novus apprentices make homeless shelter feel like home

A group of enthusiastic new apprentices have helped us revitalise a homeless shelter in Stoke-on-Trent as part of our annual Apprentice Week.

The Macari Centre, which is just five minutes away from our head office, was founded by football legend Lou Macari last year as a place of safety for those forced to sleep on the streets. As well as food and a bed for the night, the centre’s dedicated team works closely with local agencies to provide support and help the centre users to change their lives for the better.

The Macari Centre provided the perfect place to host this year’s Apprentice Challenge, which forms a key part of our annual apprenticeship recruitment process. During the day-long challenge, a team of 26 apprentice hopefuls were joined by Novus volunteers to refresh the centre’s tired interior. The apprentices repainted two of the centre’s dorm rooms, a corridor and communal room as well as tidying up the exterior including the walkway which leads up to the centre. They also carried out minor repairs and constructed a new purpose-built smoking shelter.  

The 26 young apprentices were selected out of more than 1,500 applicants from our successful UK-wide recruitment campaign earlier this year. With 53 applications for every single position available, competition for a place was fierce. The best candidates were invited to our head office to take part in the Apprentice Week of training and special activities which culminated with the Apprentice Challenge at the Macari Centre.

Our senior management team and directors kept a close eye on the latest cohort of apprentices throughout the day and the successful candidates will begin working with us at locations across the country as early as September.

Neil Washington, director from Novus Property Solutions commented: “The Apprentice Challenge is an invaluable part of our apprentice recruitment process. It not only gives the apprentices a taste for our day-to-day work and a chance to learn some vital practical skills, we can also see how well they work together as a team and how they embrace our values.

“By getting involved in a project which is designed to help give something back to the local community, we hope our apprentices will be able to appreciate how important work like this is to us.

“As a company, we are committed to nurturing talent and providing staff with opportunities to grow and develop in order to reach their full potential. This has been an exceptional year for applications and I wish all our new apprentices every success for their future careers with Novus.”

For more information about building your career with Novus please visit our recruitment site.

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MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENTS MADE BY CHANCELLOR RISHI SUNAK

Rishi Sunak has today set out plans to mitigate the impacts that coronavirus has had on the construction sector and economy at large. Here are some of the key highlights from today’s announcement. The Construction Talent Retention Scheme In a move to protect against widespread redundancies across the sector, the Government in conjunction with the Construction Leadership Council, announced a new Construction Talent Retention Scheme. Under the scheme, employers will be able to redeploy staff at risk of redundancy through an online portal and temporarily loan employees between different businesses. This scheme will also make it easier for redundant workers from other sectors to find employment in the construction sector. The Talent Retention Scheme will launch later in July and all services provided by the scheme are initially free until April 2021. Further information on the scheme is available by downloading CLC’s flyer and businesses are able to register their interest in the scheme by visiting the website. The Green Homes Grant With the UK aiming to go carbon neutral by 2050, it was also announced that from September 2020, homeowner occupiers and landlords are able to apply for vouchers to cover costs associated with making their properties more energy efficient. The vouchers will cover two-thirds of the cost to make their homes more energy efficient, up to a limit of £5,000 per home. Up to £10,000 will be provided for low income households to cover the entire cost of the upgrade. “Taken together we expect these measures to make over 650,000 homes more energy efficient, save households up to £300 a year on their bills." "And, most importantly right now, support around 140,000 green jobs.” Said the chancellor. In order to pay for the vouchers, the Government has set aside £2bn, with a further £1bn allocated to making public buildings and social housing more energy efficient. reminder that Novus are able to assist with any energy efficient works required to properties. Make an enquiry via our contact page >> Temporary cut to stamp duty From tomorrow, the Government will raise the stamp duty threshold to £500,000 in a move that will see “nearly nine out of 10 people buying their main home this year will pay no stamp duty at all.” The chancellor hopes that this will give people the confidence “to buy, sell, renovate, move and improve” properties that will in-turn “drive growth, that will create jobs.” This temporary cut is in place for England and Northern Ireland and will run until at least 31 March 2021. VAT has been slashed for hospitality sector To get the hospitality sector moving again, VAT will be slashed by the chancellor. Beginning 1 week from today (8th July) until 12th January, VAT has been cut from 20% to 5% on food from restaurants, cafes and pubs, accommodation in hotels, B&Bs, campsites and caravan sites, and attractions such as cinemas, theme parks and zoos. Mr. Sunak also introduced a surprise pioneering scheme to provide everyone in the UK "Eat Out to Help Out" discount during August. "Meals eaten at any participating business, Monday to Wednesday, will be 50% off, up to a maximum discount of £10 per head for everyone, including children," he said. Further job retention schemes Further measures to ensure job retention were also given the green light today. “If you stand by your workers, we will stand by you.” That was the clear message to struggling businesses faced with making their staff redundant due to the coronavirus pandemic. "If you're an employer and you bring back someone who was furloughed - and continuously employ them through to January - we'll pay you a £1,000 bonus per employee.” So for businesses to get the bonus, the employee must be paid at least £520 on average, in each month from November to the end of January - the equivalent of the lower earnings limit in national insurance."

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