HEREFORDSHIRE Freemasons have continued their long tradition of support for local charities with a grant for Horizon Training of £500.

Horizon Training in Hereford is part of the Plynlimon Trust group of local charities, which provides a range of services for disadvantaged, elderly or disabled people, including Hereford and Malvern Dial-a-Ride.

Horizon Training focuses on the needs of young people, aged 16-23, who have often had a difficult start in life.

It gives them the opportunity to learn vocational skills at the same time as developing their social interaction abilities and self-confidence, increasing their chances of a successful entry into the workplace.

Often, they have not achieved well in the state education system for a variety of reasons, and Horizon Training provides the chance for them to develop the abilities that will enable them to succeed in life.

The members of the Province of Herefordshire, are delighted to be able to support this very valuable work.

The grant will go towards two refrigerators for the café, which helps train learners in catering skills.

The deputy provincial grand master, Michael Holland, and the provincial charity steward, Nick Swan, visited the facility to present the grant, and were shown round by the manager, Paul Dopson.

Horizon Training at present has 76 learners undergoing one-year courses at their premises on the Foley Trading Estate in Hereford, which, because of their troubled background many of them come from, can create challenges.

Most are local, some have been assigned from authorities in London, and the number currently includes six refugees.

A variety of courses are available to them. Construction work is a popular option, covering a wide range of skills including bricklaying, plastering, tiling, carpentry, painting and decorating, and plumbing, much of the training taking place in the charity's large and well-equipped workshops. Many graduates of the course go on to undertake formal apprenticeships.

Other courses include health and sports, with a number of learners going on the join the army.

Others take the beauty course, with training in beauty, make-up, nail art, manicure and pedicure, leading to a range of employment possibilities.

Finally, there is the catering course, covering many of the subjects needed for successful entry into the catering industry.

In addition, all are taught English and maths, and are helped with sufficient IT skills to write CVs and job applications.

You can find out more about Herefordshire Freemasonry at their website