Get Ready For Work Training

Programme Type

This Programme involves a waged placement mainly with a community-based placement such as Comhairle Nan Eilean Siar’s (CNES) Western Isles Rural Opportunities - Environmental Task Force Programme.
Our objectives are:

  • To help the unemployed re-enter the world of work.
  • To provide work experience for the long-term unemployed.
  • To equip participants with skills and qualifications to enable them to secure and keep employment or to become self-employed.
  • To help create jobs through the provision of a waged work placement.


Eligibility criteria for the Environmental Task Force Programme is as follows:

  • Applicants must be registered as unemployed or in a critical job termination position.
  • Referral to the programme must be endorsed by Jobcentre Plus.
  • Applicants must be resident within the Western Isles.

Programme Duration

Participants are funded for a period of up to 52 weeks and no guarantee can be given on funding for any extension to this period.  The normal hours participants will be expected to work per week will be 30 hours.

Participant Support

Participants will be entitled to an annual equivalent holiday of 20 days (pro rata – 10 for participants who complete their 26 week programme) plus any Public holidays that fall within this period. They will receive a weekly wage of not less than the current National Minimum Wage (NMW) and any other financial support agreed prior to placement.  Any necessary protective clothing will be supplied free of charge on a one off issue basis to the value of £100.

Other Information

The provision of adequate shelter and all domestic facilities including access to toilets and clean drinking water will be the responsibility of the Employer/Sponsor.  Arrangements, including financial responsibilities for wages will be by prior agreement between the Employer/Sponsor and the Comhairle’s Accredited Training and Skills Unit.  Such arrangements and agreements will be covered during induction and prior to work placement.

Programme Management

Staff within the Accredited Training and Skills Unit of Comhairle Nan Eilean Siar or their appointed person, will monitor the ongoing management of the programme.  This will include assistance with the selection and recruitment of participants, general induction to the programme, action planning and review of progress through ongoing planned meetings with the participant and employer.

A thatching project at Gearrannan

A thatching project at Gearrannan

Criteria for Placement

  • This participant wage support programme must recruit from the current unemployed register as held by Jobcentre Plus and must not be used to substitute or replace normal planned seasonal staffing recruitment;
  • The work undertaken by the participant will be for a maximum of 30 hours per week, (hours worked in excess of this must be paid by the Placement Provider at a rate of no less than the current NMW and if less than 30 hours per week, must be agreed with CNES in advance);
  • All health and safety legislation currently in operation in Scotland relating to any employee must be observed at all times;
  • The minimum notice of termination of placement given to CNES will be one week;
  • Unless otherwise agreed and the terms of the Programme are observed, this wage support will terminate on the target end date as indicated on the Individual Training or Action Plan issued during the Induction stage of the Programme;
  • For the purpose of evaluating and monitoring, access to ongoing review of progress will be afforded to CNES appointed staff after prior arrangement with the participant and employer;
  • Evidence of attendance will be in the form of signed weekly attendance sheets (supplied by CNES) and fortnightly submitted to the Accredited Training and Skills office in Stornoway.

Employer Responsibility

Drystone Walling in Luskentyre

Drystone Walling in Luskentyre

Employers must meet the criteria outlined above and take all the necessary steps to ensure the security of the health, safety and welfare of Programme participants to the same extent, and in the same manner, as other contracted employees.  By signing the declaration section of the Programme’s “Employer Placement Application Form”, employers indicate their acceptance of these conditions.


The main targeted outcome for participants is full time contracted employment.  With the introduction of the Department for Work and Pensions “Work Programme” in 2011,  the mode of delivery and content of this Programme is subject to change.