Assistant Khaled commended in ‘Young Builder of the Year’ awards at Houses of Parliament

Barnardo’s Gabriel Hall (far left) at Houses of Parliament with awards nominee Khaled Ahmed and pare

Barnardos Gabriel Hall (far left) at Houses of Parliament with awards nominee Khaled Ahmed and parents Mayarun Nessa and Abdur Rohim - Credit: Barnardo's charity

A young man who escaped the ‘dole’ queue by learning how to teach his construction skills to teenagers in east London has been praised at the Houses of Parliament.

Khaled Ahmed, 22, was encouraged to get his own teaching qualifications by a team from The Hub skills centre run by the Barnardo’s charity near his home in Stepney Green.

He was nominated for the Young Builder of the Year awards after being taken on at The Hub as a construction assistant earlier this year.

Now he has picked up a ‘highly commended’ certificate at the awards run by Youthbuild UK.

He trained as a carpenter when he left school, but was out of work until he met a Barnardo’s outreach worker.

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“Just to be here at the awards in the Houses of Parliament is one of the best experiences I’ve had,” he said.

“I never would have thought a few years ago that I would be coming to something like this, but anything is possible with the right kind of support. The Barnardo’s team at the Hub supported me all the way.

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“Now I just want to keep going and keep going, so I can be someone and do something more.”

He plans to continue teaching, get new qualifications and “move forward one step at a time”.

Gabriel Hall, Barnardo’s manager at The Hub, said: “It was fantastic seeing the reaction of his mum and dad at the Houses of Parliament.”

Khaled now runs a weekly craft and design group session for special needs teenagers, alongside his regular construction skills classes. The group is making Christmas gifts to sell from a stall at Spitalfields Market later this year.

The Hub skills centre has had a nominee in the Young Builder awards for the third year running.

It is now looking for more youngsters for its training programmes for ages 14 to 16 in construction, money management, maths, English and ICT. Places are now available—those interested can call 020-7790 4621.

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