Business designed to help youngsters

Inverness design company HR3D is a business with benefits.

Catering for both commercial and individual clients, the firm uses state-of-the-art equipment to customise corporate, leisure, promotional and work wear, and can design artwork for individual customers on almost anything – from mugs and T-shirts to handbags and cushions.

But HR3D is a company with a difference.

Clients are not only assured of a professional service and high quality production, their custom is helping support young people in the area develop all important, life-changing skills.

Set up by local charity, the Calman Trust 2 years earlier, HR3D has two vital elements.

First and foremost, it is a business.

But it also provides important training and employment opportunities.

Operations manager explained: “Some customers come to us a first time because of our social objective but they keep coming back because of the quality of the product and service.

“Other businesses deal with us because they want a fast turnaround and reliable service, and that’s all.

“Customers get added value here. They get a quality product and value for money – the fact that it is also a charity is a bonus.”

Sean Home (24) from Inverness has been working at HR3D for six months and says the experience for young people can be life-changing.

“My first week here I was thanked for helping someone with their CV and it was the most gratifying ‘thank you’ I’ve heard in my life.

“It gives young people a confidence boost because they are working in a real work environment where they’re included, treated with respect and their opinions are asked for.”

They are given real responsibility because they are dealing with real customers and it drives them to excel.

“We’re teaching them life skills and there’s no better place for that than in a workplace.”

The Calman Trust was established in 1998 in Alness originally to support young homeless people but the charity’s services have expanded to include training – Calman is an accredited centre for SVQ, NQ and Modern Apprenticeships – employment opportunities and personal development.

The trust runs a clutch of local businesses and has recently opened Artysans Cafe in Strothers Lane, Inverness IV1 1LR where young people can train alongside catering professionals.

To see HR3D’s range of services, products and gifts including handmade felt brooches, scarves, cards and cushions – all made on the premises – call into the Harbour Road unit.

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