This year, for the second time running, the Building Awards will be supporting The Prince’s Trust, the UK’s leading charity for young people.
All the money raised at the post-ceremony casino will go towards helping more young people start a business, get a job and develop key skills.

Since The Prince’s Trust was set up in 1976 by HRH The Prince of Wales, it has supported more than 450,000 young people. With your support, it could help even more.

It helps those 14- to 30-year-olds who are struggling at school, unemployed, in or leaving care, or have had trouble with the police and gives them the self-confidence, motivation and resilience to overcome difficult circumstances. It enables them to acquire skills, achieve economic independence and find employment, as well as encouraging them to play a full part in their communities.

The Prince’s Trust runs a wide range of programmes, which focus on personal development, business start-ups, financial awards to community groups and support to young people underachieving at school. The trust also prides itself on developing local initiatives that can quickly and effectively respond to specific needs.

The trust, endorsed by HRH The Prince of Wales, is working hard to raise the status of vocational careers and promote them as viable, relevant and rewarding career choices for young people. The trust recognises the difference that can be made to young people’s lives by providing them with vocational skills.

One of the core elements of the trust’s work is providing

My trust is working to raise the status of vocational skills careers in the eyes of young people. This is particularly important given the severe skills shortage faced by construction industry employers

HRH Prince Charles, foreword, Building Awards programme

low-interest loans and grants to would-be entrepreneurs. To be considered, an applicant must be unemployed or underemployed and have been refused funding elsewhere. With the Prince’s Trust’s support, almost 4000 businesses were set up in 2001/02 and more than 220 were set up in the building trade.

The trust also runs a 12-week personal development course that encourages young people to develop the skills employers

look for. As part of the course, young people undertake a work placement that prepares them for the world of work. The skills

and experience they gain from this programme are immense, and more than 70% of unemployed participants go on to jobs, training or education after completing the programme.

The Prince’s Trust’s work in encouraging the pursuit of vocational skills is obviously something the construction industry must welcome, particularly in light of the current shortage of skilled workers in the industry. Our industry could do more by providing work placements and training.