Gordon, marked National Apprenticeship Week with meetings looking at schemes involving two young people which has given them opportunities to train as an apprentice but boost their skills and life chances as a result.
Gordon, who is a previous shadow Skills Minister, met up at the Woodhub Social Enterprise in Blackpool with Lauren Codling, who has been based there doing a Level 3 advanced apprenticeship in Business Administration.
The Woodhub is a Social Enterprise initiative of the Fylde Cost Carers Centre- and the wood products made or adapted there go to help fund the work of the Carers Centre, including supporting carers across Blackpool.
After chatting with Lauren, who is on track to complete her apprenticeship this spring and then continue to work, until mid-2016, as a Business manager with the Carers Trust, Gordon said: "It’s been really heartening to talk through her progress with Lauren Codling and her Team Leader Jill Partington from North Lancashire Training Group, who have carried through the apprenticeship as her training provider.
"Together with her previous Level 2 qualification, she has clearly now got an excellent base of transferable skills which will, as Jill Partington and I both agree, stand her in great stead for her future. It’s also a compliment to North Lancashire training for giving her a rounded apprenticeship experience, building on their long-standing work in the area."
Lauren said: "I really think that the opportunities I’ve had jointly from the Carers Centre and Lancashire Training, and particularly here at the Woodhub have been so valuable- particularly on the challenges of time management and balancing responsibilities. Everything I have done and learnt has progressed me so much."
Earlier in the week, Gordon went in his current capacity as Shadow Transport Minister to visit the huge Cross Rail project in London which has produced over 400 apprenticeships, to discuss the programme with managers and go down into the tunnelling project there with Freddy Addo who is currently completing his Level 2 NVQ apprenticeship at the Farringdon site as a steel fixer.
Gordon said: "This huge transport project started by the last Labour Government in 2009, has over 40km of tunnelling and is supporting over 75,000 businesses with 6 out of its 10 suppliers based out of London, most of them small/medium sized businesses.
"It’s also given a huge number of apprenticeships and life chances to young people like Freddy (and to older ones too). Having come from a totally different background, he and others can look forward to skills, like Lauren’s in Business Administration that will be in demand all over the UK as a result of their apprenticeship."
He added: "The opportunities Lauren and Freddy have had are something I and Labour colleagues are pledged to expand with guaranteed apprenticeships on the back of procurement projects and qualifications for young people in Blackpool and across the UK."