Owen Ferriday WCG

A teenage bricklayer from Carlisle has been named the national trainee of the year by a leading college group (@WCollegeGroup) and the EFL Trust (@EFLTrust).

Owen Ferriday, 18, has been awarded the WCG (formerly Warwickshire College Group) National Trainee of the Year.

The college group works in partnership with the EFL Trust to deliver employability programmes all over the UK for young people aged 16 to 18.

Owen completed his traineeship through Carlisle United Community Sports Trust, supported by personal development company Inspira and social housing provider Riverside.

He was referred to the traineeship by his support worker as he was a recent care leaver, and had recently returned to Carlisle to live with his father.

During the traineeship Owen gained a 12-week work placement at Nationwide Brickwork, developed skills as a bricklayer and contractor, and is now set-up as self-employed. 

Owen said: “I returned back to Carlisle as I had been placed in the care system in Lancaster due to not going to school. I was referred to the traineeship and wanted to do something with my life and gain employment.”

“I completed maths and English, first aid training, drug and alcohol awareness and money management. Then I met Simon Broad from Nationwide Brickwork who gave me my work placement and set me on a career path.

“I would definitely recommend the traineeship and it will help you turn your life around. I’m now registered as self-employed and ready for the world of work.” 

Owen is currently working full time on various high-end construction projects throughout Cumbria and the North East. He is also enrolled on a Construction Skills Certification scheme with Inspira.

Simon Broad, from Nationwide Brickwork, added:

“The traineeship is a brilliant tool for people who maybe haven’t had the best start in life. 

“Owen was absolutely fantastic on the work placement. He went from being someone who was shy to growing in confidence and developed a good work ethic. Owen has now started to work with us and is doing well.”

WCG has worked with more than 20 club trusts to deliver traineeships, with Carlisle’s first cohort starting in October 2019.

Trainee Coordinator Teresa Mulholland, trainee coordinator for Carlisle United Community Sports Trust, said:

“Owen showed an immediate level of determination where we could see he wanted to do well.

“His can-do attitude and amazing positivity shone through and he became a superb role model for the other traineeship group members. He has been a credit to the programme and he is a true worthy winner of this award.”

Dan Taylor, EFL Trust traineeship coordinator for WCG, added:

“Carlisle FC Community Sport Trust deliver an exceptional Traineeship. I am really pleased to be announcing Owen Ferriday as the 2019/20 EFL Trainee of the Year.

“His journey highlights what a difference the Traineeship program can make to someone’s life! I would like to thank everyone that was involved. 

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