ToolShed High Wycombe opened in June 2015 and over the last two years it has helped over 80 young people start a career in construction. Over 90% of graduates have progressed into work and/or further training. They came from many and varied backgrounds and they had all left school with few to no qualifications.
Graduates leave the ToolShed with positive attitudes and a drive to make their own living. This doesn’t happen by chance and is very much down to our positive reinforcement model. We focus at least 75% of our time rewarding positive behaviours vs punishing poor or disruptive behaviours. Our young people quickly learn that they get more from us (focus, time, praise, attention, direct help, work experience, etc) when they act and behave in a positive way.
In September 2018 we started a second training service to cater for young people who do not connect with studying in a school/college environment, do not want to learn construction trades and who suit a work placement approach. This service is called our Work and Study Programme.
The ToolShed Works service was started in April 2016 and since that time has sent over 800 invoices for projects completed (decorating, grass verge maintenance, carpentry, garden make overs, refurbishments, kitchen and bathroom refits, paving, etc). ToolShed Works now employees 12 people and the aim is to double that number over 2019. All profits from the Works service are channelled into the training service, very much promoting a “profit with purpose” commercial ethos.
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