Press realease from Ceri Hughes (Account Director/Special Projects):
As a direct result of the launch of the Spital Hill Partnership on 20 July 2007, the Shaw Trust has added its weight to this exciting public/private sector initiative. Impressed by the real desire for integration and community involvement expressed at the launch, the Shaw Trust is keen to pool its expertise to make sure that disabled and disadvantaged people are given as much help as possible to benefit from the proposed Tesco store and office development planned for Spital Hill.
Explaining their reasons for supporting the Partnership, Dawn Jopling, Employment Consultant for the Trust explained: “We are enthusiastic about joining the Spital Hill Partnership and working to develop new opportunities for our clients within their local community. Disabled and disadvantaged people often find it most difficult to access jobs and training in competition with others. By using our skills in this field and working with our partners in the Spital Hill Partnership, we can give these people in Burngreave the extra help needed for them to benefit like everyone else.”
The launch of the Partnership saw founding partners Burngreave New Deal for Communities, Jobcentre Plus, Sheffield First, Sheffield Futures, Sheffield Work and Skills Board, Sure Start and Tesco all sign up to an official Charter of engagement. Giving the keynote speech, Rt Hon Richard Caborn MP impressed upon the audience of stakeholders and community leaders the importance of the public and private sectors working together to deliver long-term benefits for the local community. He said he was delighted to see that part of the proposed development included improvements to Caborn’s Corner which commemorates the life and work of his father in Sheffield, and that he looked forward in due course to being able to welcome recruits to the training and job guarantee scheme that Tesco and its partners are looking to establish.
Speaking on behalf of Tesco, Max Curtis explained how Tesco is about much more than just a foodstore; it represents genuine opportunity for people to get on – both in terms of better services and facilities for the local community and in terms of jobs and future careers. “Tesco is a company where if you want to get on in life you genuinely can – whatever your background, culture or education.” Offering real examples he continued: “Our Retail Director David Potts, started work with Tesco when he was just 16. Through his own efforts, supported by Tesco’s commitment to training, he worked his way through the ranks until he was appointed to the main Board. There is therefore a very real chance that in a few years’ time, as a result of this initiative in Spital Hill, someone from this community, could be part of Tesco’s senior management team.”
Official speeches were followed by the release into the wind of a host of yellow and blue balloons. Each balloon carried a packet of sunflower seeds to symbolise the further growth of fresh hope and new life in Spital Hill that this initiative will bring.
The Spital Hill Partnership has been established to make sure that local people have real opportunity to benefit from investment by Tesco in a new foodstore and associated development proposed for the Hartwell’s site at the apex of Spital Hill and Savile Street.
Working together as a joint initiative partner members are combining resources to deliver:
Wider awareness of jobs and training on offer
Tesco Job Guarantee linked to pre-employment training
Making it easier to live, shop and work locally
Integrating with wider regeneration in Burngreave
Helping to tackle unemployment in Sheffield
Supporting a strong sense of community
The new Tesco store will create around 395 jobs and include the offer of a job guarantee scheme linked to pre-employment training. This will be designed to help people who would like to work at Tesco but who do not have the requisite skills and work experience to secure a job through traditional recruitment.