With offices across the globe, SGS Packaging Europe defines how the packaging for household brands will look when it hits the supermarket shelves. In an initiative to encourage young people to enter the industry and explore its many career options, in 2018 the company launched a comprehensive apprenticeship programme.

As an apprentice at SGS, individuals receive in-depth training, development days, one-to-one mentoring and specific tasks as part of their training. This combination of approaches ensures that the apprentice learns everything they need to know in their particular field, whilst receiving practical advice on a regular basis from their line manager.

The scheme also gives them ownership over a yearlong programme of community projects in aid of local charities, with the 2018 apprentices based in Hull and the East Riding choosing Hull Homeless Community Project, Yorkshire Cancer Research, Hull and East Yorkshire Mind and Aaron’s Battle as the beneficiaries. They then planned a series of events that ranged from an in-house auction and staff fun days, to getting involved with their chosen charities’ work in the community, such as decorating a house for a woman escaping an unsafe living arrangement. 

Now that the first year of the community projects has ended, the apprentices have handed over the money that was raised with the help of their colleagues across the offices in The Maltings and Bridgehead. Splitting the pot equally, each charity received £213.19, making a total of £852.76.

“We are immensely proud of our apprentices,” says Nicola Ashton, who manages the apprenticeship programme. “They were given the power to raise awareness and funds for their chosen charities and they all did an amazing job. Whilst the money will help the organisations to continue their crucial work, the apprentices have also inspired their colleagues to find out more about each charity and support them in any way they can.”

The apprentices have now handed over the donations to all four charities and are moving into their second year of training. Meanwhile, members of the newest intake in Hull and Tamworth recently came together for a development session explaining workplace behaviours, paid a visit to the SGS Citadel Way site for a tour, and enjoyed an afternoon at Take the Exit escape room for some team building.

If you’re interested in apprenticeships at SGS Packaging Europe, which is open to people of all ages, please contact information@sgsco.com.

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