Apprentice plumbers in the north of England are to benefit from a new training deal that will offer them experience and qualifications in domestic gas.
Kier, which specialises in the repair of social housing, has signed an agreement with training provider JTL worth around £250,000.
The exclusive contract has been made possible thanks to funding from the government's Employer Ownership of Skills (EOS) and will see JTL trainees learn about working in the specialised area at Kier centres in Sheffield and North Tyneside.
Kier regional director Mike Furze said: "Our close relationship with JTL has led to this very promising contract, which will build on the success we have already shared over the past year.
"Helping local people get into work and giving them the training they need is part of our strong commitment to making a difference to the communities in which we operate."
Participants will have the opportunity to gain an industry-recognised qualification upon completion of the course, which could significantly increase their job prospects after completing their apprenticeship.
Meanwhile JTL operations director Caroline Turner stated the arrangement would certainly be of benefit to her organisation and its clients, describing Kier's training programme as being "of the highest standard".
Under the EOS scheme, JTL customer employees will be able to attend the course for free, with the government initiative providing half of the training costs and JTL itself covering the other remaining fee.
Kier has already demonstrated its commitment to developing young talent this year, after securing a further £135,000 from EOS to help candidates train or requalify. It also runs a scheme to support former members of the armed forces in their resettlement with a new career.
The facilities at its Killingworth base are described as being state of the art, while a qualification in commercial gas is also available.