Borders College

A walk in the park for life studies candidates

Providing unemployed people with new skills and knowledge is vital in enabling them to return to work, and this was the case for one group of candidates, having just completed the Catering for Life course.

Back row L- R: Fiona Turnbull, Contracts Manager BDU, Jill Lawrie, Trainer BDU, John Scott, Candidate Chrys Murphy, Trainer BDU. Front row L- R: Claire McLean, Employer Adviser DWP, Audrey McLuckie, Trainer BDU, Caroline Leishman, Candidate, Jean Thomas, Candidate, Maureen McLean, Candidate, David Mornin, Work Coach DWP.

The nine candidates recently celebrated their successful completion of the course at an event in Dalkeith, the second time this has been delivered in Midlothian, and using their newfound skills and knowledge, will now hope to secure employment.

The course, delivered by Borders College Business Development Unit (BDU) and funded by the Department for Work and Pensions, involved the candidates studying on a 10-week programme, which included certificated courses such as REHIS First Aid, Elementary Food Hygiene, Health and Safety, and Computer and Online Basics. Other modules studied included Work Placement, Kitchen Skills, Interview Skills and CV Writing – all vital skills in helping them get back to work.

The group also made use of local scenic parks and gardens, as many of their modules were outdoor based. Dalkeith Country Park was used to complete the Walking module, while the group attracted some local attention in Kings Park, using a large parachute as part of their Keep Fit module.

The candidates gained invaluable confidence and skills throughout the programme, being well supported by the Trainers and Work Coaches, and the rewards are already being recognised, with one candidate securing employment and another accepted on a further training programme.

Fiona Turnbull, Contracts Manager for the BDU, commented:

“We were pleased to be given the opportunity to run another successful course in Midlothian. The course is for people out of work and looking to gain life skills and it was great to see how it has changed the lives of the candidates who attended – gaining confidence and getting back into a routine, as well as learning new skills and achieving certificates for their CVs. We are delighted some of the candidates have already achieved positive outcomes and wish them all well for the future.”

To find out more about the courses offered by Borders College Business Development Unit, visit: or telephone 01450 361030.

Published: Fri 6th Sep, 2019