Career Ready partnership

A group of Career Ready students

August 2022 update

We are reaching the end of our fundraising for the Appeal and have begun delivering our 1821 projects. The Career Ready partnership is already supporting school students across some of Scotland's most disadvantaged areas.

The project is working across Scotland to help young people kickstart rewarding futures through a programme of business mentoring and paid internships. Ten young people (age 15-17) began the programme last autumn thanks to the support of 1821 Appeal donors, and 30 more will be starting this autumn.

Each student has been carefully matched and supported by a mentor from a small-to-medium enterprise (SME) or third sector organisation that would otherwise have been unable to take part. In particular, it means that during the summer holidays, each student will undertake a four-week paid internship to help them gain real world experience in a career or industry of interest to them.

Making a difference to young people in Scotland


One of the students to take part in the Career Ready programme thanks to donations to the 1821 Appeal is Amber from Whitburn Academy in West Lothian. Since November 2021, she has been mentored by Kelly Taylor of Taylor Roofs based in West Lothian.

“I've really enjoyed getting to know my mentor [Kelly] and building a relationship with her,” says Amber. “I feel comfortable speaking to her about anything, particularly my worries about going forward into the world of work.

My mentor has been extremely supportive and because of her I had the confidence to apply for college.”

Kelly Taylor, Taylor Roofs

“Amber has started to make real progress, in terms of improving her confidence and communication skills,” says Kelly, adding that the 1821 Appeal will enable her to offer Amber an internship in the summer.

“This funding will support our business in providing Amber with the opportunity to learn new skills that she will be able to utilise as she progresses into the world of work.”

Kelly Taylor of Taylor Roofs

Anne Wexelstein

Career Ready Director for Scotland, Anne Wexelstein

"This year, support from the 1821 Appeal has been particularly helpful in enabling Career Ready to go out to SMEs, micro-businesses and third sector organisations across Scotland. In particular, we've been able to speak to organisations who are not in a position to pay a student for the four-week internship due to the current economic challenges, but who we know will provide great mentoring and a life-changing internship.

We're able to fund the internship pay and payroll costs in return for the host organisation providing a mentor for 18 months and team members to work closely with the student for the full four weeks. Time and time again, the invaluable connections with business and the immersion in their workplace builds confidence and aspiration and unlocks the potential of students who happen to have grown up in areas where their apparent career opportunities (and beliefs about them) may have been limited. We're able to help them open doors to new possibilities and transform their future.”

The companies hosting students this summer thanks to the support of the 1821 Appeal are: The Circle, KLAS Care, Taylor Roofs, Animalia CIC, Craigsfarm, the Terrence Higgins Trust, Henry's Coffee, Barnardo's and Forth Environment Link.

The Impact of the Career Ready programme

At the end of their programme 97% of Career Ready students say they have developed skills that they believe will be useful in their future career, and 95% say they have a better understanding of how they're expected to behave in the workplace. Career Ready knows the post-school sustained destinations of every young person that's been on the programme – and there have been some extraordinary results. 98.1% of Career Ready Scotland graduates who left school in May 2021, amid the pandemic, are reported to have reached a positive destination, be it in higher education, further education, apprenticeships or employment.

The first ten students supported by the 1821 Appeal Career Ready Project will start their internships this summer, and finish the Career Ready programme next summer, whilst 30 more young people follow in their footsteps from autumn 2022. We'll keep you posted on how they get on.

If you’re a student, prospective student, teacher, parent, or carer interested in knowing more about the project, please visit Career Ready.

Donations welcome

Donations to the 1821 Appeal Career Ready Project continue to be very welcome. If you know someone who might like to make a contribution, or simply find out more about the project, please contact