Graduates from the Rangers Charity Foundation’s latest Cashback for Communities – Towards New Futures course played Police Scotland on March 14th in a friendly football match at Benburb FC in Govan. After a tight game and a 2-2 draw after 90 minutes, the CashBack team won on penalties. Graduates were then presented with their course certificates in the Ibrox Suite.
The Foundation’s Cashback For Communities – Towards New Futures programme aims to re-engage people aged 16-24 with current or past convictions and help them move towards a more positive future including working, volunteering or further education. It is delivered in partnership with four Scottish prisons, Govan Thriving Place and a range of key community and industry partners, including Police Scotland.
Derek Rhoddan, Cashback Coordinator at the Rangers Charity Foundation said:
“The young people have done really well on the course and I’m proud to say that they are all going on to positive destinations after completion. This includes some who have secured employment, college placements or further study.”
“Every single candidate gained at least 3 SQA Awards which will help with their employability prospects and confidence. In fact, over the last 2 years, 98% of the young people who have taken part have gone on to a positive destination which is a huge achievement considering the barriers they face.”
“Police Scotland are a really important partner for us and as part of their Pitchin’ In programme, come in every week to talk to the groups about topics like social media footprint and hate crime. These are really valuable education sessions but also provide an opportunity for the young people to get to know the Police and vice versa and build relationships. The match today is symbolic of really breaking down barriers and we have all been looking forward to it.”
Chief Inspector Murray Starkey, National Football Information Point – Scotland said:
“Police Scotland welcomes the continued opportunity to deliver our Pitchin’ In Programme to young people in partnership with Rangers Charity Foundation.
The programme provides an excellent opportunity for Police Scotland officers to engage with participants using the pull of football to raise awareness of societal issues in an informal educational environment which in turn empowers the participants to make more informed life choices.”
Participants improve their physical and mental health by taking part in accredited fitness and coaching sessions and a mental health first aid course. The initiative includes a variety of formal and industry recognised awards (including utilising the Foundation’s SQA Centre status), vocational work experience and the development of core skills which will greatly enhance their employment prospects and CVs.
The programme is free and is run four days per week for eight weeks. Participants also have continued support after completion of the course to help them stay motivated and on track to achieving their goals.
CashBack for Communities is a unique Scottish Government programme which takes funds recovered through the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and invests them into community programmes, facilities and activities largely aimed at diverting young people at risk away from potentially criminal or anti-social behaviour.
The next free 8 week course starts on 25th April. For more info contact DerekRhoddan@rangers.co.uk