A HOMES revamp programme in South Tyneside is creating jobs and training opportunities for local people.
Marc Jary, 37, from South Shields, has returned to a job in Civvy Street after six months with the Territorial Army in the Middle East, and is among seven people taken on by AH Property Services to carry out improvements to 500 homes in South Shields.
He said: “I was struggling to find work after my stint out there, so this opportunity means everything to me. It is something I have done before and like doing, so it’s been a real godsend.”
In addition, the company has taken on its first resident liaison officer, Mel Jeavons.
Her role is to be the link between the teams carrying out the refurbishment and residents, so that they understand the process, are prepared for the disruption and have a contact for queries.
She said: “I love meeting with tenants on a day-to-day basis and building relationships with each of them. I equally enjoy working alongside contractors from a variety of trades, helping to ensure that each gets the job done efficiently and to the best possible quality.”
AH Property Services is also teaming up with Harton Technical College to give students work experience in a range of disciplines, as it begins the project.
Working on behalf of South Tyneside Homes, the company will rewire and install new kitchens, bathrooms and heating systems to the homes over the next eight months as part of a £2m improvement programme. Business development director with AH Property Services, Keith McDougall, said: “We have carried out improvements to thousands of homes around the region as a sub-contractor to larger firms but have begun to secure work as a main contractor directly with new clients.
“This is a project which, as well as allowing us to grow further and create work opportunities for local people, will improve the quality of life for our clients’ tenants.”
Coun Jim Foreman, lead member for housing and transport with South Tyneside Council, said: “I am delighted that AH Property Services is working with South Tyneside Homes to deliver homes modernised to a very high standard.
“As well as providing investment and employment opportunities in these challenging times, the works are helping to transform the lives of the residents.”