Making a Difference
to people's lives

Apprenticeship helps Bradley on the road to recover

A Shropshire man has revealed how he overcame homelessness and mental health struggles to secure an apprenticeship with us here at Wrekin.

Bradley Goodrick, aged 20, was recently taken on by The Wrekin Housing Group as an apprentice building assistant based at the Withywood extra care scheme for the over-55s in Shrewsbury.

Losing the roof over his head in 2019 due to a change in circumstances had a devastating effect on Bradley’s mental health.

However, after finding accommodation, he was supported by Building Better Opportunities Shropshire and the Prince’s Trust to gain a six-month placement with Wrekin in June last year.

Delivered via the UK Government’s Kickstart scheme, his trainee appointment was later extended by three months, before the housing group rewarded his hard work with a two-year apprenticeship.

Bradley’s role sees him tasked with helping to maintain residents’ properties at Withywood.

He said gaining meaningful employment and learning new skills had been vital in helping to turn his life around.

Bradley said: “Before I started here, I wasn’t quite myself emotionally and physically as I wasn't eating and I wasn’t keeping myself going.

“I needed that push and luckily, I had people supporting me throughout so I didn't feel the need to give up.

“I was really out of my comfort zone being in these surroundings at first, but I soon started to realise it’s a good place and there’s so much more I can get out of this.

“I started opening up and to come out of my shell and I’m now reaping the rewards so I can’t thank everyone enough.

“My future aims and aspirations are to be the best person I can be and to get as much knowledge from this job as I can.”

Gill Price, Social Value Co-ordinator at the Wrekin Housing Group, said: “We’re really proud of what Bradley has achieved as we’re passionate about making a difference to people’s lives.

“The feedback we’ve received about him has been fantastic. He’s got right in there, rolled his sleeves up and really grown in confidence.

“He also has a great camaraderie with the team at Withywood and has learnt many new skills.

“Bradley has now secured an apprenticeship with us as a building assistant and will be working towards his Level 2 Property Maintenance qualification as part of that.”

Building Better Opportunities officer, Tina Jones, said: “When I look back at the young man I saw versus the young man I see now, they're just two different people.

“Bradley talks to me about his aspirations and dreams and that wasn't something he was talking about when I first met him.

“He says he's saving for a car and he wants to go on holiday, which are all such positive things. It’s clear from looking at him how far he's come on.”

The Building Better Opportunities Shropshire programme was launched by supported employment and training charity Landau in January 2017.

The Wrekin Housing Group is one of several partner organisations involved in the initiative, which is aimed at tackling unemployment and economic inactivity among people aged over 19.

The programme is funded by the European Social Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund.

Wrekin was also proud to participate in the UK Government’s Kickstart scheme, which offered work placements for 16 to 24-year-olds in receipt of Universal Credit.

25th August 2022