An introduction to Women Into Construction

Women into Construction is an independent not-for-profit organisation that promotes gender equality in construction. 
The Women into Construction Project (WiC) was developed at the Olympic Park to address the gender imbalance in construction. Seen originally as part of the legacy of the 2012 Olympics, it was felt that by increasing the numbers of women working in all areas of construction (on a high profile site such as the Olympic Park) there would be a trickle-down effect throughout the construction industry; resulting in a permanent change in the predominately male culture within construction. The project demonstrated that there are many women who are highly motivated and eager to attain opportunities within the construction sector, and they have a positive opinion that negotiations on this topic will evolve into placements and employment.
Their vision is “to be the construction industry’s organisation of choice for women and contractors, and to change the face of construction, normalising the position of women in the construction industry.”
Throughout this period, WiC were funded by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) and the London Development Agency (LDA). On completion of the Olympic build in July 2011, the CITB was keen for the good practice that had been developed on the Olympic Park, to be extended to construction sites across London, continuing to fund the project with this remit. Women into Construction then became hosted by BeOnsite, the charitable arm of Lend Lease, with which we had already developed a close working relationship on the Athletes Village build.
On the 8th of May at Tideway in London (Tideway East Project Office, 19 Chambers Street, SE16 4XR) at 10:00 – 13:00 WiC are hosting an event which is targeted to a new cohort of women from across London who have not previously attended. Women can be new to or familiar with construction, unemployed, employed, trained or looking to up-skill.

For those unfamiliar with the events, it is an opportunity for WiC and their members, partners to speak to women about career opportunities within the construction industry, to find out more about their interest and transferable skills, and to discuss any training needs. They also promote pre-employment initiatives offered by various construction companies for projects across London.

One testimonial for WiC reads:

“Women into Construction is one of the most effective and inspirational charities that I came across during my five years as CITB Deputy Chairman. Their success record is about thirty times higher than equivalent programmes run by governments. As soon as I saw what they were doing on-site at the Olympics, transforming women’s lives by giving them construction capability, I knew this was an organisation that deserved support. Levy-paying companies were constantly asking for more women trained by WiC, because of their professional standards and attitude to hard work. And the women appreciated that often for the first time in their lives they now had work, self-respect and true skills for life.”
Judy Lowe former Deputy Chairman CITB

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