Olympic Park’s best apprentices and businesses crowned at East Works Awards
PUBLISHED: 12:00 03 November 2018
The Olympic Park’s best employers and apprentices were recognised at an awards ceremony.
The East Works Awards celebrated those who’d taken part in the East Works Programme, which matches employers with apprentices to fill skills gaps and provide opportunities for young people in east London.
Thursday’s awards at Here East were hosted by the London Legacy Development Corporation, the company which manages the Olympic Park.
The evening was compered by LLDC’s Sonita Alleyne and Jone da Cruz, a former apprentice on the park who worked his way up to site manager for construction company, Taylor Wimpey. Last year, Jone, who lives in Hackney, won the ambassador of the year award in recognition of the work he’s done to promote apprenticeships.
He said: “When I was at school, apprenticeships were not promoted as much, but they made such a difference in my life. When I go into schools now, the reaction is very positive. They realise the importance of experience, not just qualifications.”
List of winners
Apprentice of the Year – Jack Connolly
Individual Achievement of the Year – Ricky Quy
Intern/Trainee of the Year – Michelle Nyachuru
Employer of the Year – The Camden Society at Union Kitchen Café, Timber Lodge
Innovation of the Year – STEP
Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion – The Camden Society at Union Kitchen Café, Timber Lodge
LLDC Ambassador Award – Lianne Peterkin
Entrepreneur of the Year – Johnson Wong
Education Partnership of the Year – Class Of Your Own
Making It Happen Partnership of the Year – Flipside
Employer of the year went to The Camden Society at Unity Kitchen Cafe. Almost two thirds of the workforce at the cafe are from neighbouring boroughs, and the society’s apprenticeship programme focuses on supporting people with learning difficulties.
Fashion designer Johnson Wong won entrepreneur of the year, after founding his business, AFTER:WORK, which takes used protective equipment destined for landfill and refashions it into lifestyle products. Johnson, who took part in the Echo ++ Fashion Accelerator programme and studied at the University of the Arts, was recgonised for the work he’s done in reducing the amount of personal protective equpiment being destroyed.
Intern of the year went to Michelle Nyachuru, a design intern at tech company Made by Many, and the individual achievement award was given to Ricky Quy, who works as a cleaning operative on the park.
Almost 200 making it happen awards were given to the individuals who’d taken part in the East Works programme, and there were awards presented by Geoff Thompson, chair of the University of East London, Newham’s deputy mayor, Charlene McLean, and LLDC’s Paul Brickell.
He said: “This year’s awards have recognised a particularly outstanding group of young people and employers. It shows how creating opportunities for young people and working with employers to address skills gaps is at the heart of what we’re delivering on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.