Works+ Employability Service

Young people gain access to work thanks to a person-centred approach that teaches key skills and builds confidence, tackling a complex range of social issues and economic barriers.


Rural poverty, poor transport infrastructure, social isolation, low educational attainment, poor mental health, and the socioeconomic effects of disadvantage are key issues young people face in the Borders. Works+ assists young people in overcoming these barriers, building up their confidence, and achieving their full potential.


Works+ is a successful and award-winning employability charity based in the rural Scottish Borders. This project works with disadvantaged, disenfranchised, and socially isolated unemployed young people between the ages of 16 and 24, to help them achieve a positive prospect of employment, a return to education, or long-term training. Works+ receives support from all sectors of society within the Scottish Borders. Local councillors from across the political spectrum keep in touch with the project, whilst members of the Scottish Parliament regularly praise its work, supporting funding applications to major funders. The business community also helps Works+ through corporate fundraising, financial support, and job placements.


The Works+ person-centred approach builds confidence, removes barriers, and connects young people with support organisations. This service also teaches employability skills and techniques, which lead to positive and sustained work opportunities appropriate to the young person’s ambition and abilities. Delivering one-to-one support, time, compassion, and empathy are the key skills of the staff, who in the last 12 months have managed to deliver a 98.5% success rate in achieving positive destinations for the young people attending Works+. In-depth knowledge of both the barriers and opportunities that young people experience is key to supporting the disenfranchised and isolated local youth. It helps them to reengage with society, providing long-term benefits for young people and their communities.

The Scottish Borders is a beautiful area of Scotland that nevertheless has pockets of deep deprivation and rural isolation, where young people can encounter real challenges and barriers to finding positive life goals. The staff at Works+ recognise that many of these young people need a person-centred support service, to help them overcome challenges and move forwards in their lives. Works+ was formed to deliver this support. Since inception, we have made positive differences to the lives and wider communities of these young people.

Mark Timmins - Programme delivery manager
Project owner
Mark Timmins
Programme delivery manager
Project team
Mark Rowley
Elected Councillor, Scottish Borders Council