The project, based at the Ecology Centre in Kinghorn, also works with a range of voluntary and statutory agencies and organisations. The project works with two target groups. The first target group is people aged over 50, to take part in healthy outdoor pursuits. The second target group is aged between 16 to 25 years of age. Old and young take part in joint activities. Some of the young ones are mentored by older volunteers who pass on life and work skills.
The project was set up following observations on site that older volunteers were taking younger people under their wing and helping them with advice and guidance. There have been a number of older volunteers recruited doing everything from gardening through to photography and helping with building projects.
The project also works with a range of voluntary and statutory agencies and organisations, taking referrals, training and basically building up a complete package for volunteers.
Benefits for the Community
The project has helped to break down barriers, and build trust and understanding between the generations. Friendships have been formed, which have continued into the wider community and has lead to people helping those in need, for example removing a blown down tree from a garden.
Benefits for the Younger People
The younger people have the opportunity to learn new skills that will help them with employment and further education in the future. Life and work skills the young people can gain from this project include food production, catering, wood work, and environment landscaping. It is also hoped that it will improve their health and wellbeing.
Benefits for the Older People
The Enviro-Mentors’ project aims to improve older people’s health and wellbeing, with the objective to make them feel better and improve their self esteem. It is hoped that the project will give them the opportunity to socialise and make new friends.
This project contributes to the Scottish National Performance Framework (NPF):
Scottish NPF Objectives
The main NPF objective that this project contributes to is:
- Wealthier and Fairer will support activities that address inequalities and enhance skills, employability and job opportunities. It builds on the characteristics of solidarity, cohesion and sustainability to ensure that all of Scotland has an opportunity to flourish.
These NPF objectives could also apply:
- Healthier will enable people to live longer and healthier lives.
- Smarter will focus on improving literacy, numeracy and attainment and on raising and realising ambition for all.
- Greener supports the sustainable use and enjoyment of Scotland’s natural and built environment. It also underpins much of Scotland’s wealth creation. Focus on the responsibility to protect and enhance Scotland’s environment for future generations.
Scottish NPF Outcomes
We have strong, resilient and supportive communities where people take responsibility for their own actions and how they affect others: Being part of a strong community gives us the support we need locally. It minimises crime, antisocial behaviour and their social and economic costs.
Our young people are successful learners, confident individuals, effective contributors and responsible citizens: To enable children, young people and (subsequently) adults to thrive from an early age, and make a positive contribution in the 21st century.
We value and enjoy our built and natural environment and protect it and enhance it for future generations: Scotland’s built and natural environment is a major asset for us to enjoy in life and business. That is why we need to protect and enhance it.
We have tackled the significant inequalities in Scottish society: We will continue to advance awareness-raising and anti-discrimination activity, to challenge attitudes, reduce stigma and build a tolerant Scotland.
We live longer, healthier lives: Securing longer healthier lives for the people of Scotland will always be a top priority for governments and individuals alike. There are significant challenges which can only be addressed by everyone in Scotland working together, pursuing this goal through improving lifestyles and life circumstances, and a shared ownership of an effective NHS.