9 October 2020

YMCA Key College, the educational arm of YMCA Derbyshire, has launched a partnership with Morrisons Flowerworld to help students get into work despite the Covid-19 emergency.

Flowerworld, based in Sinfin, employs 460 people on each shift and produces 400,000 bouquets every week.

Its Employability Academy has been developing a strategy with specific concentration on the recruitment of young people.

This has seen the creation of a partnership with YMCA Key College which will particularly benefit those who have little or no experience of the workplace.

They will undergo a seven-week course which covers a variety of subjects from CV writing to interview techniques. Due to the current restrictions, the first sessions will be taking place weekly via Zoom lectures.

The Academy aims for students to assist its staff directly in the Flowerworld warehouse as soon as possible.

For many of the YMCA Key College students, this is the very first experience of understanding the world of work and employers’ expectations.

The tie up will help increase their self-esteem and their understanding of basic workplace principles such as time-keeping and professional dress sense.

Louise Ward, People Advisor at Flowerwold Employability Academy said: “It’s a great time to be working with young people in Derby.

“This year has been difficult for a lot of people and we want to give the YMCA Key College students as much confidence as possible that they will succeed after they finish their studies.”

At the end of the seven weeks, all students who have engaged with and enjoyed the course will be given the chance to apply for paid work experience as a general operative at Flowerworld during peak production.

Julia Hodder, Head of Training and Education, said: “We are so pleased to be able to offer such an exciting programme to our students, many of whom have never been offered practical experience before.

“It is fantastic that Morrisons and Flowerworld are concentrating so hard on nurturing the young talent of our city. We can’t wait to see how they flourish during this time.”

If you are a business that would like to offer work experience opportunities to college students, please do email Julia.hodder@ymcaderbyshire.org.uk.