Young people attending Kibble’s Skills Academy have launched a Christmas bike shop selling bicycles to staff which have been refurbished by themselves.

Kibble is a specialist child and youth care charity and The Skills Academy is its education and training centre based in Hillington Park and St Mirren Football Club. Young people who are enrolled develop skills, gain qualifications and complete valuable work experience, which all help to build employability skills.

The Skills Academy covers a number of subject choices from construction, engineering and painting and decorating to hospitality and bike maintenance. The bike shop operates as a social enterprise with all profits reinvested into the entrepreneurial project and the students have been working hard on the latest repairs for its Christmas bike shop.

The bikes have been upcycled and refurbished ready to be rehomed in time for Christmas and are available for Kibble staff to shop sustainably and buy at affordable prices. In future, Kibble’s Skills Academy hopes to open the shop to the wider public so more people can benefit.

Una, a young person at Kibble, took on the role of marketing assistant for the project.

She said: “It was fun helping out on the photo shoot to sell our upcycled bikes to staff. I got to work with Kibble’s marketing team and could see the thought that goes into the process. It has made me consider learning more about marketing.”

Jim Gillespie, Chief Executive Officer of Kibble said: “Entrepreneurial skills are an important factor of The Skills Academy. Our aim is for young people to learn the value in possessing knowledge and expertise in a life-long skill, equipping them with qualifications and practical experience to help build a potential career.

“By students opening their own Bike Shop to our workforce, young people can develop an aptitude for business, finance, customer service and leadership. They have made a fantastic effort getting the shop ready for Christmas with more great things to come from this enterprise in future.”

To find out more about Kibble, visit

Headline image:Christmas bike shop at the Skills Academy
Photo Credit: Kibble Education Centres 

By Ricky Kelly

Main writer for Renfrewshire News

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