Charity Awards 2024

Building Heroes Education Foundation

Helping ex-military staff find work in the construction sector

The Building Heroes Education Foundation works with the education sector, Armed Forces, and construction industry to help ex-servicepeople and their family members requalify and find work in construction.

Building Heroes Education FoundationIt was established in 2014, after finding that there were 120,000 unemployed veterans of working
age across England and Wales, at the same time as a shortage of 250,000 skilled workers in the construction sector.

Since then it has progressed from a single training centre to a network of 13 facilities across England and Wales, encompassing a mix of six on-campus programmes and seven on-site skills academies.

It began with one training programme but now offers several courses, including the recently launched Green Skills Retrofit training. The Introduction to the Built Environment programme is scheduled to launch during the next academic year.

It takes five weeks for learners to gain essential construction skills and nationally recognised qualifications.

Some 99% of applicants complete the Building Heroes programme and obtain civilian qualifications and 73% of graduates transition into employment, self-employment, or pursue further training in construction or property maintenance.

There is a £1,300 per learner cost to deliver the programme; however, this leads to a social value of up to £21,000 per graduate, according to the National Social Value Portal.

As the charity celebrated its 10th anniversary year, in February 2024 it also celebrated the graduation of its 3000th learner.

Charity Awards judge Nicola Toyer, head of charities at Investec, said Building Heroes was “focusing on a community that doesn’t always get a lot of attention”, and it was particularly impressive that 15% of all service leavers are now applying to join the programme.

Judge André Clarke, director of charity development at Lloyds Bank Foundation, praised the model’s “strong partnerships and adaptability; it also shows potential for scalability, and demonstrates great outcomes in terms of pass rates and progression”.

CC reg no. 1158886

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