Helping young people learn new skills

Vocational Learning

At Thrive Trunkwell Garden Project we are helping young people aged 14 to 16 years from schools in the local area. In addition to a break from their classroom routine, they have the chance to learn horticulture skills and can study towards a City and Guilds vocational qualification at entry level or level one.
Teachers who work with these young people often struggle to find ways of keeping their pupils interested, one teacher told us:

"I have been trying to find alternative learning activities to raise self-esteem and confidence for a number of students over recent years. This was like a gift out of the blue. The fact that it leads to an accredited qualification was wonderful."

The students benefit from one to one support and tasks include sowing seeds, growing and harvesting vegetables and herbs, and learning how to use tools safely. All the activities at Thrive help them to:

  • work in a team of people their own age and make new friends
  • work and communicate more easily with adults
  • develop greater independence and maturity
  • feel they are achieving and gaining confidence
  • learn a new hobby and have options for further study and the possibility of a rewarding career


A teacher commented: "this has helped Tim sort out some clear career ideas. School was going badly and Thrive was a lifeline. We were looking at continuing with a horticultural course at the Berkshire College of Agriculture and realised he was too well qualified for the introductory course! His self–esteem and confidence have increased so much – Tim can now do more than he thought possible."

Simon is a student on the programme and his parents are delighted by his progress: "He loves Tuesdays, the highlight of the week. It makes the four days he has to go to school more bearable. We chat each week about what Simon has been doing. He has benefited greatly from attending Thrive... thank you to you all."

For more information on our vocational programmes for young people, please email or call us on 0118 988 4844.