Dr Isobel Grigor, MBE

Dr Isobel Grigor, MBE

- 3/12/2015

On Wednesday 2 December 2015 Mrs Janet Bowen, Lord-Lieutenant for Ross and Cromarty, Skye and Lochalsh, attended a private reception to award Dr Isobel Grigor, Founder and Chief Executive of the Calman Trust, her MBE for services to the community and the economy.

Her work has changed the lives of many, many young people across the Highlands who were at risk of homelessness or experiencing some form of crisis. And from a little acorn a very substantial tree has grown.

In 1988 for the next 20 years through to 2008 Dr Grigor offered independent consultancy services to both voluntary and public sector bodies across the North of Scotland, and she played a role in the establishment of several community led support services, one of which, Pulteney People’s Project providing practical support and assistance to disadvantaged young people, now employs 40 people.

But the pace changed in 2008 when she founded the Calman Trust which was formed to support young people either homeless or at risk of being homeless. At the beginning few were involved but the organisation rapidly grew opening an office in Inverness There Dr Grigor developed support services to enable young people to develop life and employability skills in a real work setting and being paid a wage.

These trading activities include the Café Artysans and Ness handmade Toiletries. The café has won numerous awards both for quality but perhaps even more importantly 90% of the young people move on to mainstream employment.

The Calman Trust in the meantime has gone from strength to strength. A current project is Hotel Artysans as a part of the Inverness campus of UHI. And the Trust’s young people’s training has been recognised at the Social Enterprise Awards in 2013.

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