We help thousands of individuals across the UK thrive in new careers. Here are some of their stories.
I left the army after three years of service after deciding it wasn’t the right career path for me. I gained some valuable skills and assisted with the construction of the Nightingale hospital. When I decided to leave the army, I gained some information from the resettlement team, and they signposted me to Building Heroes. I decided to embark on the course with Building Heroes to gain some practical skills and gain some information on the types of pathways within the sector.
It was great to participate in the first cohort at the Watford Academy. The course content enabled me to practice different skills and workout what areas I liked/didn’t. It pushed me in the right direction. I couldn’t have asked for a better tutor and felt fully supported throughout the duration of the course. I enjoyed the variation of the course content and the extra extended projects. We were able to see other sites and get some perspective of all the trades we were learning about.
I have embarked on a contract with Regal and gaining further insight into the sector. I am interested in partaking in some future courses with the college and progressing with Regal into a trainee site management role.
I joined the Army in 2004 and served for ten years. During my time serving I took part in two tours of Afghanistan as well as being stationed in the Caribbean for a long period. I was signed off in 2014for medical reasons and unfortunately lost my path and faced lots of personal issues. I also suffered with severe PTSD.
I was referred to the charity in 2021 and was enrolled on 2 courses. I wanted the opportunity to learn new skills and better myself in life. I gained a level 3 qualification in the Built environment and a level 1 multi trades at Watford. I was part of the first cohort at the new academy. Throughout I received full support from the Building Heroes team, and it really helped me in finding a new direction. The tutor was fantastic and provided me support in both the theoretical and practical side of the course. The Academy provided me some experience working onsite and a fresh perspective on my direction within my career. Both Building Heroes and the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London helped me with any difficulties I had and helped me create a different perspective within myself. It has left me feeling positive about the future.
I am currently in a six-month job role with Regal, the employer partner of Building Heroes at Watford. Regal engaged with us throughout the course. I am based at one of their sites within a temporary role as an access control operative. It is giving me a real insight into the industry, and I can meet different supply chains and gain more insight into the different roles available within the sector. Once my contract finishes, I will be looking to explore options in Painting and Decorating/roofing within Regals supply chains, perhaps participating in further courses and looking at joining the Building Heroes Property Maintenance team as a self-employed operative.
Nick recently graduated the Building Heroes Performing Engineering Operations course.
"Having served 23 years in the military and soon to leave I was looking at different career paths but was uncertain what I wanted to do. I attended the Engineer in order to gain experience and potentially work in the Engineer environment.
The course consisted of Metal work fabrication including welding and use of other engineering equipment. The course was extremely well organised and run by experienced instructors that were always on hand to assist the students and ensure we got as much as we could from the course. With an extremely relaxing environment myself and all students managed to complete all assessments required as well as fabricating a few things for ourselves, which was interesting and fun.
Building Heroes also helped myself and others in tailoring our CV to the environment me maybe wishing to work in. Live job vacancies were also sent to aid in future employment, this was extremely helpful.
Overall, I found the Building Heroes Engineering Course extremely enjoyable and would highly recommend it."
A working mum and ex-Army wife from Worthing who took the plunge to switch careers with the help of Building Heroes, is “over the moon” after landing a job with Southern Rail’s new station maintenance team.
Natalie Parker, whose husband served with the King’s Royal Hussars, had worked for years in book-keeping when she was made redundant last year. Despite her years of experience and accountancy qualifications she had never been happy, so she took the brave decision to embark on five-week intensive course in property maintenance with Chichester College Group, organised by military veterans’ charity Building Heroes.
Southern, which is helping towards the cost of the charity’s training by putting its own newly-formed stations maintenance team through the Level 1 foundation course, saw how good Natalie was and offered her a job – their first woman among 11 handymen on the team.
Southern’s maintenance team manager Tessa Holme, who works out of Southern’s new maintenance depot next to Horsham station, said: “The fact she has completed an accredited course at Brinsbury College is a big pull for me. She graduated that course with a distinction in virtually every area.
“She is very approachable, very customer-focused and gets on with the job. This is one of the reasons we wanted to partner with Building Heroes because it gives us the opportunity to spot talent.
Natalie, who will be looking after coastal stations, said: “I am absolutely over the moon. I’m ecstatic to land a job here. It’s amazing, it really is. I love the variety of getting out, meeting the lads and taking pride in the stations, trying to maintain and keep them up to scratch. I’m totally grateful to everyone and to Building Heroes.”
Our graduate Dean Horton on how our Construction Skills course helped him find employment.
“There was a lot I enjoyed about the Building Heroes course, it really was a fantastic course, well organised and the tutors were excellent. Since the course, I applied for a job as a Trainee Assistant Site Manager with Barratt Developments and I was successful.
Since starting my new role, I have utilised so many skills from the course as well as the knowledge I gained from the course. I am able to manage and communicate effectively with the trades on site because of the insight the course gave me; having a basic knowledge of what the trades do and how they do it has given me a lot of credibility which I never would have had without the course.
I enjoy the working environment, which is very similar to the military environment. I enrolled on the course with a plan to be self employed as a handy man, however, the course gave me such a fantastic insight into the construction industry and opened my eyes to other opportunities. I am eternally grateful for the experience and how it has led me to where I am now.
The Building Heroes course has, without doubt, contributed to me being successfully employed in the construction industry and in a job that has excellent prospects. I am truly thankful to the Charity.”