This dream is becoming a reality for two of the Templegate Sports Academy students based in Kensington, Liverpool. Hannah together with Adrian Delves has shown that through their commitment, enthusiasm and sheer hard work that dreams can come true.
On Saturday 14th June 2014 they will board a flight bound for Mexico City where they will spend seven weeks on a paid placement with the potential of a two year contract.
Hannah and Adrian responded to Templegate because they were not in Employment Education or Training, desperate for an opportunity to gain more qualifications and combine it with their love of sport. This happens every day for the young people at the Templegate Academies in Bristol, Manchester, Liverpool, Solihull, Coventry, Telford, Blackpool and soon to be opened in Burnley on the 13th June 2014.
The aim is very simple. We use sport as the hook to engage with young people who are struggling to move into employment or education. For many building up their confidence and self-esteem is all they need to move onwards and upwards. For many the opportunity to participate in a group setting and develop teamwork skills is often the break that they need.
At least 40% of the students enter employment with many more progressing to further education. Whilst on the course they also experience work placements. Some students continue as coaches at our own academies and we help them to develop their skills to a higher level.
The Templegate ethos is wherever possible to employ the students that we train in order for them to be able to directly relate to the new students who join our courses. This is all done under the watchful eye of our own experienced and professional coaching staff many of whom are ex professional footballers.
It has been recognized that this type of model really does work at Ministerial Level with the Business Secretary Vince Cable strongly encouraging the new project opening in Burnley as an exemplar in engaging with young people to help them progress in life.
Terry Phelan - Sports Development Manager (formerly of Republic of Ireland, Wimbledon, Chelsea, Everton and Manchester City)
“It’s an absolutely fantastic opportunity for young people interested in sports. I know there’s over 900,000 NEETs (not in employment, education or training) at the moment. Some of them haven’t got the right education, some of them drop out of school early so it’s really an educational programme and it’s educational through the sports so if they’ve got something on paper, they’ve got a chance.
I left school with no exam based work and I was lucky I played football to tell you the truth. I just feel like I’m doing something worthwhile, really giving it back to the kids and you would be amazed the amount of people who are looking to come on board. Ex footballers are role models and some of them have come through hardship as young kids like we all have. It’s really about giving it back and giving them a chance.
At Templegate we try to give our students the best possible experiences to help them into employment or training. For many it is a lifeline that they grab with both hands and we have had many successes so far in placing promising students into other football clubs or putting them on the road to employment. I would urge anybody with 14 hours to spare each week who is struggling at the moment to get in touch with us so that we can help them achieve their goals.
For many, attending the course kick starts their careers. At Templegate we like that think that NEET stands for - Not enough experience to gain employment or training – and that is exactly what we try do to create that opportunity”