YMCA Training, in association with the Monday Charitable Trust, is offering a free Level 1 City & Guilds qualification in basic horticulture for people with disabilities.
After a successful first course, it is recruiting for the next one which will run in Salford from Friday 31st January.
Aimed at would-be landscapers across the region, YMCA says its practical horticulture course aims to give people living with learning disabilities, mental health issues or a physical disability, the opportunity to learn professional gardening in an inclusive and intimate environment.
It went on to confirm that those who complete the process will gain a free, nationally recognised industry qualification and support into work.
The first course covered turf care, plant and weed identification, plant production, pruning, fertilisers, soil preparation and hanging basket production.
On completion of the 10-week course, graduates are also offered support with job applications and interviews or advice on further training in the horticulture industry.
As YMCA Tutor, Rob Ironmonger explains, YMCA Training cares about individuals rather than targets: “The YMCA is more focussed on the learner and less on numbers, but with colleges it’s all about bums on seats.”
Adding: “We care about what the learner will get at the end of the course and what they can move onto. My job is to get people work as well as teach them. I’m looking for their next step and hope to find them something, even if it’s only a part-time job. They just want to learn and get into work.”
You can find out more about the course HERE.