Based in Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire, UCAN delivers training and employment opportunities for young people excluded from education and employment as well as those who are keen to make changes in their lives and move towards greater independence.
In 2013, UCAN received an investment of £40,000 to purchase two people carriers to transport people to their facility and working capital to help them develop their business and become self –sufficient.
The ability to collect individuals via their own transport has been a real boost to the organisation with the local authority recognising this as a unique selling point for the service. With the ability to collect and drop off participants who otherwise would be unable to attend, UCAN have quickly expanded, opening up the service to more people.
Start and Grow also provided UCAN with sufficient start-up capital to recognise market opportunities and leverage further funding. They now have plans to build a gym and a recording studio. This will expand the impact and diversity of activities the UCAN can offer.
Crucially, the investment has allowed UCAN to recruit additional staff from the local area , freeing up the directors time to concentrate on strategy and development and to , pursue new markets and opportunities.
Matt Buckman, UCANs Managing Director, said: “Start & Grow was an attractive option. The investment gave us confidence and enabled us to expand much more quickly. We want to generate an income and create jobs; the investment has helped us do that. We have been able to deliver more services in less time to the community we work with “.