The deputy chief inspector of the Care Quality Commission has given her seal of approval to Anchor’s apprenticeship scheme.

Sally Warren met the first wave of apprentices who joined England’s largest not-for-profit provider of care and housing for older people at a special ceremony on Monday 7 September.

She heard about the level of on-the-job training the apprentices had received as part of the year-long apprenticeship.

The apprentices will graduate next summer with a Level 2 NVQ certificate which entitles them to a living wage when they then start working for Anchor.

Hayley McKinstry, 17, who was keen to work at Anchor’s Greenhive care home in Peckham as she has seen for herself how much her Nan enjoys living there, said she had learnt so much in the first three months of the apprenticeship.

She said: “The job is going so well. I love it! I get so much satisfaction knowing that the residents know I’m there for them and I’m able to make them happy.

“The support from the rest of the staff at Greenhive has been great. I couldn’t ask for better. I would really recommend a career in care, 100%!”

Ms Warren praised Anchor and said she was impressed by the calibre of the apprentices she had met at the ceremony.

She said: “Anchor’s apprenticeship scheme is a fantastic way to get people working in care. This scheme means people are supported to learn all about adult social care and build the foundations for a great career.

“From the apprentices I have met today, it is clear Anchor has recruited people who really care about providing great care and support.

“What is really positive is even within the first few weeks of the scheme, all the apprentices can talk about having made real connections with their residents.”

Anita Cunningham, Anchor’s Head of Training said the apprenticeship was an extension of the organisation’s focus on training its workforce and professionalising the sector.

She added: “It is important apprentices learn good practice from care staff who are committed to providing top quality care and that is why Greenhive, which was the first care home in London to receive an outstanding rating from the CQC, was chosen to train Hayley.

“The apprentices will perfect essential skills and receive a recognised qualification to help support older people.

“We reward all of our care employees, including the apprentices, who have worked hard to get their Level 2 NVQ by giving them a living wage which amounts to £9.15 per hour in London.”

For more information about apprenticeships and careers with Anchor, visit www.anchor.org.uk/careers

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