Growing Skills: Charlie's Supported Employment Journey into Horticulture Charlie has always had a keen interest in gardening. Having had some previous experience in helping people with garden odd jobs, Charlie’s ambition was to learn more about the horticultural industry. Taking the time to learn about Charlie’s interests and understand his goals, bemix Supported Employment Specialist, Sophie, worked with Charlie to find an exciting placement with Sustainable Garden Solutions (SGS) in Medway. SGS specialise in sustainability and provide services in garden maintenance, landscaping and design. Charlie began a Supported Internship with SGS in November 2023. Charlie’s work includes clearing, cutting back, pruning, mowing - and beyond. His role involves early morning starts, long days and cold temperatures - but this doesn’t deter Charlie! His positive attitude and enthusiasm to learn means Charlie is proving himself as a committed and valuable member of the team. He has developed a great rapport with co-workers, working closely with Head Gardener, Ben, who generously shares his knowledge so that Charlie can strengthen his understanding of the horticulture industry. Charlie has embraced opportunities presented to him during his internship - including the responsibility of driving a company van and taking great care of all of the tools inside it. “I really enjoy talking to Ben while working. SGS is the friendliest company that I have been in. I also enjoy driving the van." - Charlie “Charlie is happy, helpful and eager to work and learn. It's been nothing but easy, and a pleasure welcoming him to our team here at SGS” - Sustainable Garden Solutions Charlie is off to a flying start, learning more and more every day - we can’t wait to share more of Charlie’s story, in 2024! As part of their role, bemix Supported Employment Specialists work with young people from the moment they join bemix, building trust and taking time to understand a young person's hopes and ambitions. Paired with solid understanding of the interests and aspirations of a young person, a Supported Employment Specialist can explore every possible opportunity for the intern they support. Our Specialists work with both the young person and their employer or team, so that everyone is supported every step of the way. When a young person and an employer feel prepared and ready to continue their journey together, support from our Supported Employment Specialists can be reduced sooner. Just like Charlie, young people in our Supported Employment programmes are developing skills in roles that match their interests and ambitions. Interns are achieving their goals and making meaningful contributions in a range of industries - being seen and heard in business, hospitality, care, education, retail and horticulture! With the vision to see the value in everyone, organisations like SGS welcome talented and loyal employees into their teams. When people are fully and equally involved in all areas of society, including workplaces, everyone benefits. If you are a young person looking to make the journey from education into employment, find information about our Supported Employment programmes, click here. If you are an organisation looking for more information about how your business can be involved in Supported Internships, click here. For more Good News Stories about Supported Employment, click here.