An apprentice from Nottingham City Council’s Adult Social Care team has been nominated for Apprentice of the Year.

The awards, run by the Public Service People Managers’ Association (PPMA) are to celebrate exceptional apprentices who are excited by learning. They honour those who are committed to building a career and have the potential and talent to make a real difference within the public sector.

Justine Burrows joined Nottingham City Council as an apprentice Care Support Adviser back in July 2014 when she was 19 years old. She is one of only 24 people from councils across the UK to be shortlisted for Public Service Apprentice of the Year. She will now spend two days at Warwick University, where she will have to present to a panel to show the skills she’s gained at the council before judges choose a winner.

Speaking about her nomination and apprenticeship, Justine said: “I learnt so much during my time with the Adult Social Care team, I always wanted to be involved with helping people and that’s my main focus with my career.

“I worked closely with vulnerable adults and their families to set up care packages. I helped people with their queries and worked alongside my colleagues to meet people face to face and get their views, so I could help and support them.

“My apprenticeship gained me a full time job in the Directs Payments Team and it really helped me to become more independent, I know have a flat and live on my own.”

Helen Jones, Director of Adult Social Care at Nottingham City Council, said: “Justine was truly an exceptional apprentice, not only is she fired up to learn but she is one of those who is really going to make a difference within the sector.

“Her enthusiasm, dedication and willingness to help our citizens was a great asset to our team. Justine was an important part of our department and she is proof that an apprenticeship in Adult Social Care can lead to great things.”

Councillor Cllr Nick McDonald, Portfolio Holder for Jobs, Growth and Transport, said: “We are committed to improving the lives of the people living in our communities and providing work and training through apprenticeships is one way in which we can achieve this.

“Our apprentices add great value to the council. A highly skilled and motivated workforce is essential to the success of our organisation – it is people that make the difference, not organisations or processes.

“I’d like to congratulate Justine on her nomination and wish her good luck in the finals. I’m sure many more of our apprentices will follow in her footsteps.”

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