VOLUNTEERS in Peebles are working to get youngsters in the town ‘up-skilled’ through a series of workshops and activities.

R-Evolve is a CIC (community interest company) set up by a group of bike enthusiasts in Peebles to help give children and young people transferable skills they might not have got through school.

The group provides bike workshops across the Borders, having visited Galashiels, Selkirk and communities in Peeblesshire.

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“We’ve had some powerful outcomes,” said Aegir Maciver from R-Evolve.

The workshops provide metal skills to high school aged young people and those that have already left formal education.

Aegir added: “They [young people] are learning employability skills, trade skills, and they’re interested in seeing how they can go ahead with those skills.”

As well as helping teenagers to learn how to fix their own bikes, R-Evolve has also partnered with companies in Edinburgh, making lockable cargo boxes with their workshop students.

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With a background in youth work – coaching Peebles Rugby’s under 16s and previously working with Bike Punks – and training in artistic metal work, Aegir wanted young people to be at the centre of R-Evolve.

“It’s always been a focus of mine to get kids up-skilled,” he told the Peeblesshire News. “I felt I wanted to create a company that engages with young people.”

Peeblesshire News: Oscar Reid of R-evolve on the far left with workshop session attendees Oscar Reid of R-evolve on the far left with workshop session attendees

In addition to the workshops, the social enterprise also runs an Active Bus in partnership with the parent council at Kingsland Primary School.

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The Active Bus sees a member of the R-Evolve team meet pupils at the Whitestone Park gates to walk, cycle or scooter to school as a group.

“It’s all about reducing car journeys and reducing congestion,” said Aegir.

“We’re looking to get more kids involved.

“It’s a great wee route, it crosses one road so it’s super safe.

“And we’re in one big group in the morning and afternoon.”

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The Active Bus runs five days a week with the first pick-up at 8.10am, then returning to Whitestone Park at the end of the school day at 4pm.

R-Evolve and students at Peebles High School are also making a bench from recycled bike parts for Kingsland Primary School as part of the Active Bus programme.

Alongside their existing projects, R-Evolve is looking to expand their services to offer evening sessions for under-14s looking for something to do on a Friday or Saturday night.

The sessions at the Drill Hall will give teenagers skills on how to fix their bikes.

For more information, visit R-Evolve and the Active Bus' Facebook pages.