Hartlepool firm teams up with academy to prepare students for work

Catcote students Nikita Hudson, Callum Sharpe, Ian Robson, Kim Waring, Michael Turner with Vikki Jackson-Smith from J&B Recycling,  and Jackie McGarry.
Catcote students Nikita Hudson, Callum Sharpe, Ian Robson, Kim Waring, Michael Turner with Vikki Jackson-Smith from J&B Recycling, and Jackie McGarry.
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A firm has teamed up with a neighbouring school to help students with learning difficulties prepare for working life.

J&B Recycling recently set up a business link with Catcote Academy.

It is very important for us to have good relationships with the local community, and we are delighted to have forged this link with Catcote Academy

Vikki Jackson-Smith, managing director of J & B Recycling

The Hartlepool-based firm is supplying wooden pallets to the school to help students taking part in a social enterprise scheme.

The project will see the wood transformed into furniture.

J&B Recycling’s drivers are delivering 40 pallets at a time to a workshop based at Hart Farm where the students carry out their handiwork.

Amanda Metcalf, who is responsible for the sixth form at the school which is in Catcote Road, said: “This is all part of our post-16 study programme where the students learn about life skills and employability as well as entrepreneurship and work skills.”

Managing director of J & B Recycling, Vikki Jackson-Smith, said: “It is very important for us to have good relationships with the local community, and we are delighted to have forged this link with Catcote Academy.”

Students will build garden furniture and Amanda added: “We are extremely grateful to Vikki and the team at J&B Recycling for their help and support, and we look forward to strengthening that relationship in the future.”

Future plans between J&B Recycling and Catcote Academy include the creation of supported internships to help students get a feel for a working environment.

Jackie McGarry, who is the information advice and guidance officer at Catcote Academy, added: “To be involved with a business such as J&B Recycling is fantastic for our students.

“We are looking forward to working in partnership, to increase opportunities for work experience and supported internships for our students, enabling them to gain invaluable work skills, increase confidence and prepare them for sustained employment in the future.”

J&B Recycling handles around 120,000 tonnes of waste each year from household, commercial, industrial and construction sources with customers including Nifco UK, Camerons Brewery and hundreds of community buildings, pubs and restaurants.