The seventh Green Team is up and running in Central Bedfordshire, with funding from Central Bedfordshire Council and Oaklands College, Hertfordshire, along with private clients.
Find out who's who and why they're part of the team.
Chris Houghton, Green Team Supervisor
This is my sixth Central Bedfordshire Green Team; I started as Green Team Supervisor in January 2012, having worked in a youth hostel in Stevenage. I loved the idea of combining previous landscaping experience with youth work to offer young people employment opportunities.
My favourite part of my job is working with the team on a daily basis to support them and make them more employable. The successful outcomes are really rewarding, too – it’s brilliant when a finished site looks great or when a Green Team ‘graduate’ gets into work or training.
Stephen Elkin, Green Team Assistant
I joined Groundwork just a month ago so this is my first Green Team. I’ve been gardening since I was 12 and I like working with young people and giving something back to the community, so when this role came along I knew it was a really good opportunity.
The best bit for me so far has been getting down to the physical work – I could already see the difference in both the team and the grounds after just a few days on site.
Dylan, Green Team member
Before the Green Team, I spent most of my time watching Pokemon in my bed and playing on my Gameboy. Through the Green Team, I hope to have fun and get a job when I’ve finished.
Sam, Green Team member
Before I joined the Green Team, I was at an MPCT college in Farnborough – it’s a military preparation college and you do drills, fitness etc. I want to get my CSCS card and work experience from the Green Team and then go on to join the army.
Richard, Green Team member
I was doing ground work at Mentmore Country Golf Club before I joined the Green Team, as well as working at Frost Landscapes. I want to get more qualifications and gardening experience through the Green Team. Once I’ve finished, I want to join the Army Cadet Force as a volunteer and join the Territorial Army.
Alex, Green Team member
Before the Green Team, I did Level 1 in Carpentry at college. Now I’m in the team, I want to get my CSCS card, driving license and experience in outdoor activities so I can get a job or go back to college when I finish – I’d like to do Level 2 in Carpentry or get a carpentry apprenticeship.
Daniel, Green Team member
I studied electrical installation at college for 2 years before I started on the Green Team. I also had a temp job in a warehouse but my contract ended. Now I’m part of the Green Team, I want to gain work experience, qualifications (including my CSCS card) and have a laugh. Afterwards, I’ll hopefully get a job or an apprenticeship.
Karl, Green Team member
Before the Green Team, I spent all my time fishing, apart from a few days’ labouring and some time working at home. I hope the Green team will give me qualifications, a CSCS card, experience and a chance to get a job so I can earn money.
Nathan, Green Team member
Before the Green Team, I was stuck indoor with nothing to do except watch TV. Before that, I used to go to Stratton Upper School. I want to get experience through the Green Team, as well as have some fun with the upside of learning at the same time. Afterwards, I’ll probably think about going to Shuttleworth College or do another Groundwork project if possible.
Albert, Green Team member
Before I started on the Green Team, I was trying to get some work experience and was job searching. Now I’m part of the team, I hope to get some work experience so that I can try to get an apprenticeship or a job afterwards.
Shaun, Green Team member
Before the Green Team, I was sitting in my bedroom playing PS3 24/7. I had a paper-round and used to go to college doing Level 1 in Public Services but I dropped out as it was boring. I want the Green Team to give me experience in landscaping and how to work better in a team, as well as my CSCS card. When it’s over, I want to get a job in landscape gardening as I can’t be sitting around doing nothing every day.
Tyler, Green Team member
I studied Motor Vehicle Mechanics at Dunstable College before I joined the Green Team. I also did vocational studies and I achieved Level 3 in Functional Skills. Through the Green Team, I hope to be able to complete the CSCS test for health and safety and to work on site in the future. Hopefully the Green Team will mean I have more success in getting a job and starting a career for life so I can be happy.