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Wrekin supports Women in Construction Week 2022

The Wrekin Housing Group is aiming to inspire more women to work in construction.

A recent report has revealed the three factors holding women back when seeking their first job in construction are: unequal growth opportunities (17%), bias in the workplace (33%) and lack of female role models in the field (29%).

Whilst much has changed within the construction industry over the years, women still represent just 15% of the property and construction workforce. However, the tide is beginning to turn.

In recognition of Women in Construction Week (6-12 March 2022) Wrekin is providing an insight to the numerous women making their mark in the housing association’s development team. Women represent more than 50% of Wrekin’s development team.

Development manager Jane Kind’s career in housing spans 30 years and has seen her work in many areas of the sector, however it was a love of working with contractors which sparked a career in construction and project management within the development team.

Jane said, “I’ve been working in housing since I left school and experienced a variety of roles including customer service, area housing, homelessness and adaptations but it was my love of project work including dealing with contractors which led to my first role in the development team as an assistant project manager.

“Working in development perfectly links my housing background with the property side. I adore my job and Wrekin and I’ve had the support I need to progress my career by learning on the job. I feel there is now more variety of opportunities for women and women are no longer shoehorned into traditional roles. Now 32 years later I’m still in housing and I can’t see that changing.”

Development Assistant Emma Langan has worked at Wrekin for five years starting out as a Support Worker within Wrekin’s Extra care brand ShireLiving. Always looking to broaden knowledge and expand her career prospects, Emma has recently taken the opportunity to join Wrekin’s development team.

Emma says:” Wrekin has provided me with the opportunity to gain so much experience and I have undertaken lots of training allowing me to progress with the support of my managers. The way Wrekin offer secondments is a great way of people having the chance to work in a new area; I am loving my secondment and would love to progress further in the development team.”

Project Manager Charlotte Prince is now entering her ninth year with Wrekin, and is now overseeing some of the housing association’s key developments – including a new £4 million community-led rural housing development of 27 energy efficient homes in Prees.

“I think a lot has changed in the last few years. We are seeing more women in key development roles – that’s definitely the case here at Wrekin. I’ve felt hugely supported during my time here - I’ve been allowed to study for a degree and make real progress in my career.

“I still think there’s work to do across the sector. While we are seeing women project managers & quantity surveyors, there’s still a massive lack of female representation. when it comes to carpenters, brick layers and ground workers.

“I love what I do. We're providing people with affordable homes for life. I think in terms of my career, I would like to stay within this sector for the coming years and continue to provide really good, comfortable, energy efficient homes for those in housing need.”

Simon Thompson, Director of Development at The Wrekin Housing Group said:

“Wrekin has a long history of working to ensure equality, diversity and inclusion across the organisation – it’s something we are really passionate about.

“We will continue to work hard to ensure we have a truly representative workforce. Our development team has some fantastic female employees who are a real credit to our organisation.”

6th March 2022