New team to go green

YOUNG unemployed residents in North Herts will go green as a team after volunteering for an initiative which involves working on outdoor landscape projects across the county.

Following its introduction last year, five new recruits not in employment, education or training have formed the Green Team and have the chance to learn new skills and qualify for an NVQ in Land Based Studies.

During the next 16 weeks, Groundwork Hertfordshire’s scheme will see the Green Team undertake a range of tasks such as landscaping, tree maintenance, coppicing and path building, including projects at Highfield School in Letchworth GC and the gardens of North Hertfordshire Homes tenants.

Last year’s first Groundwork Green Team in partnership with North Hertfordshire Homes (NHH) saw all five young participants successfully complete the programme and go on to further their education or into paid work.

“We were so proud of last year’s team and what they accomplished, that we have funded another group of young, local adults,” said Kevin Thompson, chief executive of NHH,

“This is a good investment for the whole community as we are helping to create places where people want to live.”

Steve Harvey, executive director of Groundwork Hertfordshire, added: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with NHH again on such an important project for us both. I wish the team much success.”

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The partnership received a ‘highly commended’ acknowledgement at the Homes & Communities Agency Awards 2010 under the Investing in Skills category, which recognises efforts to tackle worklessness through training and apprenticeships.