Founded in 2012 to address local issues around lack of access to training and support In the Dunbar area, The Ridge has grown to become the go-to provider of local, effective, personalised and holistic empowerment for local people to help them overcome challenges, to move beyond dependency towards contribution and fulfilment.
The charity has a wholly-owned trading subsidiary social enterprise construction company, The Ridge Foundations CIC (TRF), which provides high quality traditional skills training, primarily through stonemasonry and joinery apprenticeships and SQA-accredited courses for youngsters not thriving in a mainstream school setting. TRF undertakes work on derelict properties in the Dunbar Conservation Area, which are owned and being restored by The Ridge SCIO on behalf of the community. TRF also carry out commercial contracts externally to The Ridge, expanding the experience of trainees and generating invaluable income.
Across the Ridge, our focus is on enabling people to fulfill their potential, helping them to tackle barriers and gain the skills to live life to the full.
Our Services have been developed and continue to develop in response to local need and opportunities.
- We provide training and support to help people find gainful employment locally
- We have developed a range of practical supports to allow more vulnerable members of our community to overcome barriers in accessing training and necessary interventions, to facilitate the fulfilment of their potential.
- We provide training and support to give individuals the knowledge and skills to cook healthy food from scratch for themselves and their families, with a limited budget
- We protect our local environmental heritage by creating training gardens within our historic Backlands garden sites, respecting the sites’ historic significance, whilst also developing local skills and knowledge around gardening
- We promote and make available the personal health and well-being benefits of gardening
- We protect our local built heritage by creating a base of skills and knowledge to carry out restoration and maintenance of historic buildings.
- We develop business uses for restored buildings, to create jobs and to provide income to make our projects sustainable
- We stimulate our local economy by improving Dunbar town centre as a tourist attraction, as well as an attractive place for local people to live, work and shop
The Ridge currently has 34 employees (including 11 apprentices), and 20 regular volunteers.
Our busy and effective Support Team collaborate closely with a wide range of partners including statutory agencies and other community groups to address the complex and diverse range of needs and crises with which members of the community seek help. The team runs a range of activities and groups, including a Recovery Café, with a strong and holistic focus on supporting people to move forward in their lives, in most cases towards the dignity of properly paid work.
The Garden Team operates within our 2 community gardens, where staff and volunteers provide fantastic health and wellbeing opportunities for our clients and beautiful green spaces for the local community. They also provide produce and cut flowers to local businesses.
The Ridge Foundations CIC comprises Stonemasonry and Joinery teams, where high quality craft apprenticeships are made available to individuals who would otherwise not have accessed or sustained such an opportunity. Access to mentoring and support are essential elements of the transformational journey this represents.
The Training Team deliver SQA-accredited courses in Rural Skills and Construction to school pupils from across the county. Most have not been thriving in school, if they were attending at all, and this is often an opportunity to experience success for the first time, to discover skills and build a confidence which can be the reset for a positive future life.
We have Finance, Admin and HR support across all teams, and there is much strong cross-team working through all aspects of our work.
We are a close-knit team, passionately committed to making a real, long-term difference within our community, and in the lives of those with whom we work.
The Ridge – Organogram
Further information is available in the following links and the documentation below: