Grow to Work is a social enterprise set up to provide training and employment for young school/college leavers who will find it harder than most to find employment. Trainees work as a team with other school leavers, many of whom have learning difficulties or a learning disability, such as autism.

The work is extremely physical and mostly outdoors. We can promise you will get your hands dirty, get wet and cold in winter, hot and sweaty in summer. Activities include grounds maintenance, vehicle and machinery maintenance, landscaping and growing vegetables. We also aim to enjoy what we do and eat well from the land.

The latest trainees have learned to lay lawns, dig land drains, plant and harvest vegetables, tree surgery, path laying, building sheds, and cut acres of grass. In 2013 all Community Jobs Scotland employees progressed to full time college or were offered permanent jobs at completion of their contracts.

Grow to Work is open to all young people living in the central Borders. We work closely with local schools to identify those pupils who would most benefit from the hands on approach to learning in an open environment. Our "get stuck in" philosophy will not appeal to everyone, just as working outside in the open air is not everyone's idea of fun. But for those school leavers who would prefer to learn from living, we offer a practical approach to learning about employment and sharing your skills with others, to get the job done.


Our objective is to provide a true working experience and develop a range of rural skills, that will enable every trainee to develop their full potential, access the employment activity of their choice and make life choices that enable our young people to live independent lives.

We provide a range of ways to access and experience the activities on offer. Local schools can arrange for part day visits and for those considering a full time placement,  we recommend spending a work experience placement with Grow to Work, while still at school. If you have already left school and think a change of direction is in order, we are happy to offer short term placements, so that you can try before you buy.

Everyone works their best, if they enjoy what they are doing. To this end, we always try to match activities  to the interests and abilities of every trainee.  You will face new challenges, be introduced to new activities and meet new people. You might even make a few new friends.

If you (or someone you care for) is interested in a position with Grow to Work please contact Gregor Scott.

Read about the difference between life on benefits and life at work in the words of a Grow to Work trainee.