Works+ is a new person centred employability project, that takes over the work that was undertaken by the charity Tomorrow's People, in the Scottish Borders from 2013 until March 2018, when the charity went into administration. The need for the service that Works+ provides has not gone away and it was decided by a group of concerned professionals and the staff team, that we needed to start a successor organisation that became Works +. We have successfully registered as a SCIO and since starting we have successfully helped 39 disadvantaged, isolated young people achieve a positive destination of employment, education or training.
This year Works+ aims to work with 50 disadvantaged, unemployed young people aged between 16 and 25, from across the Scottish Borders helping them to obtain positive sustained destinations of employment, education or training and will follow up and support all of our clients for at least 12 months from their leaving Works+
The young people that we work with are referred to us by the following organisations from across the Scottish Borders; social work, high schools looking for progression for their pupils, referrals from current and past clients, self-referral, criminal justice social work, activity agreements, Job centre plus, NHS, Penumbra our Facebook page and youth clubs from across the Scottish Borders.
We upskill our clients with the following employability, development and training; young people's ownership of the journey that they are going on, personal confidence building, CV writing, developing an understanding of the role of the cover letter, effective job search, effective application, interview skills and finally “Filling the Vessel”.
“Filling the Vessel” in the Works+ projects context, is to ensure that the young people attending Works+ do interesting things, that may reinforce skills and attributes, develop already existent interests or testing new things, that allow them to talk interestingly and engagingly about themselves at interview.
An example of “Filling the Vessel” is the ongoing relationship with the National Galleries of Scotland outreach team, where young people are exposed to the National Galleries of Scotland and then create art, in the centre where we are based and out in the wider community.
We also work with the John Muir Trust and their estate in the Scottish Borders “Glenlude” to expose the young people to the outdoors, through the John Muir award, in partnership with the big houses of Abbotsford and Bowhill.
We also aim to build sustained relationships with local employers to help them trust that the young people that we work with, are the future for their businesses.
The project works through outreach and drop ins, as well as a structured 10 week block (which operates 4 times a year), from our base in the Focus community centre in Galashiels.