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PD Ports creates opportunities for all

[ June 24, 2021   //   ]

PD Ports, the statutory harbour authority for the River Tees, has joined forces with the Tees Valley Education Trust to create learning opportunities for children across the region. Alongside other key partners they will develop career-led learning opportunities from primary ages to post 18.

After recently launching a recruitment drive o recruit 50 new apprentices across its operations, PD Ports is now accelerating its commitment to raising aspirations, and inspiring young people from age five upwards about maritime careers and promoting local pride in the River Tees.

Head of marketing and communications at PD Ports, Kirsten Donkin, said: “At PD Ports we already do a tremendous amount of work to raise aspirations of young people,” said Kirsten. “We work closely and collaboratively with local education institutions and training providers such as the High Tide Foundation and the Tees Valley Logistics Academy to inform 12-18 year olds of the range of exciting opportunities available across the maritime industry.

“However, we also recognise that by the age of 14, young people have already conditioned themselves to believe there are certain jobs they can do and those which they can’t; many of which are based around gender stereotypes and family influences. We must do more to tackle these misplaced perceptions.”

The Teesport Explorers program will get young people down to the port to see the operation and meet its people.

Kirsten Donkin added: “There is a huge sense of positivity in our region at the moment, the future prospects around investment and jobs are very encouraging and with a projected 32,000 jobs associated with Freeport status over the next 25 years, we need to ensure local people are aware of the opportunities and are equipped with the right skills to benefit.”

Tees Valley Education Trust chief executive, Katrina Morley, said: “By working in collaboration with the biggest employer in the region, and Teesside University, we are able to construct a variety of curriculum, skills, experiential and project-based learning for all of our children and young people,” said Katrina.

“The ability to learn about real world employment opportunities, visit a range of sites, experience being at the forefront of the exciting investment in the area, will have long lasting impact on the life chances, aspirations and choices for all.”

(L-R) Tees Valley Education chief executive, Katrina Morley, PD Ports’ Kirsten Donkin, PD Ports general manager human resources, David Wilson and TVED multi-academy trust director of trust improvement & standards, Helen Hall.

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