Tuesday July 29, 2014
July has been another sweltering month. It's great to see so many residents and staff enjoying the parks and open spaces in Brent; the borough really is buzzing in the summer. To complement the outdoor summer sizzle, we are pushing ahead on a number of important projects.
I was delighted to attend the launch event of The Week of Action in Sudbury and Wembley Central on Monday where I met many locals. Events like The Week of Action allow us to focus on issues in specific areas which you have told us are important to you. In this case, pressure washing the red-stained streets of Sudbury from people spitting paan on the streets.
We have launched another recruitment drive to inform people about two Apprenticeship schemes - one offered within the Council and one within local businesses. The Brent Council Apprenticeship, open to 16-24 year olds, is attractive due to the sheer breadth of roles on offer - from business administration to customer service and IT.
The Apprenticeship within local businesses, open to all ages, is attractive as there is such a diverse range of businesses in Brent - from design companies to retail outlets to Engineering firms. Choosing a career path that is stimulating and fulfilling is tricky, no matter whom you are, so these Apprenticeships offer a great opportunity to try different things, and gain a qualification, in a supportive environment.
'Jobs' was also the hot topic on everyone's lips as the new contract that Brent Housing Partnership (BHP) has with Wates Living Space was announced last week. The contract with Wates, which will last a decade, will create 450 jobs in Brent, 100 apprenticeships, 60 employment placements for unemployed local people and £1m investment into the local community.
My kids have just started the school holidays and it's a challenge for any parent to know how to keep them occupied for the long summer period. The Brent in Summer programme should go a long way in helping to solve this. The programme is rich and varied - there really is something to keep the kids busy over the summer months.
From fencing to cheerleading, from horse riding to an introduction to BMX, from yoga to archery, there is a tempting selection of fun to be had and new skills to learn. I'd like to commend the Youth Services, Libraries and Sports and Parks teams for creating such a eclectic and exciting mix of events and most importantly for making them accessible to as wide a range of children and families as possible - many of the activities are free or at very affordable prices.
As I write about all these events, it re-iterates to me what an exciting place Brent is to live and work - so much stuff, right on your doorstep, delivered by people who are passionate and dedicated to making Brent one of the most rich and interesting boroughs if not in London, in the whole country.