A SELF-proclaimed former troublemaker who has shown “phenomenal” dedication to turn his life around has launched a fundraising bid to keep his job.
Adam Kelly, 16, faces losing his role at Midlothian Garden Service unless £6000 can be found.
His bosses have now launched a “crowdfunding” campaign to attract donations.
Adam, who lives in Mayfield, was referred to the Mayfield and Easthouses Youth 2000 Project (Y2K) by his guidance teacher after regularly skipping school in his early teens.
That led to a placement on a work programme provided by Midlothian Training Services – and he impressed his bosses so much that he was given an extension.
Midlothian Garden Service wants to offer him a year-long contract, which would also see him complete a horticulture course at Borders College.
But no funds are available, and only £500 of a £6500 target has so far been raised.
Y2K manager Sharon Stoddart said: “We got Adam a placement with Midlothian Garden Service, the deal being that if he didn’t go to school he couldn’t go there either.
“There were a few ups and downs in the beginning, but the difference in Adam since has been incredible, really just phenomenal.
“In my 15 years of youth work I’ve never seen anyone else commit themselves so completely to changing their life.”
Former Newbattle High pupil Adam is hoping that raising the funds will put him one step closer to realising his dream of owning his own gardening business.
He said: “It’s so satisfying to find something you actually want to do, and I’m very grateful to everyone who’s helped me get this far. It really has changed my life.
“At school, if I turned up at all I was late, and I was causing trouble and doing stupid things, both in and out of school.
“I think it was because of the people I was hanging around with – the old story of getting in with the wrong crowd.”