Mentor Finalists – Coach Core Awards 2024

This award celebrates an individual in an organisation that employs a Coach Core apprentice who has surpassed expectations in supporting their apprentice(s).

By James Burbidge · 18th January 2024

When an apprentice starts work at an employer they are assigned a mentor, someone from the organisation who knows the ropes and knows how to support and develop a young talent into the role. These mentors are critical to helping the apprentice into the world of work – for many it is their first job. They are also often the first point of contact about any other challenges the apprentice may be facing, from mental health difficulties to changes in living circumstances. As you will see in the nominations below, the mentors Coach Core work with do not hesitate to go above and beyond to support their apprentices and give them every chance to succeed, in this role and beyond.

This award is sponsored by Lifetime Training.

Garreth Chambers

Your Trust Rochdale (Manchester)
Garreth is supporting 3 apprentices on the 2023 Coach Core programme in Manchester. His commitment, reliability, and proactive efforts have ensured each apprentice is being given the best possible chance of success. He is also committed to the overall programme, volunteering to be involved in interviewing/assessing other apprentices and attending a national conference with apprentices from across the programme to support them delivering workshops and panels. He actively sets up opportunities within his network to allow the apprentices to develop their presentation skills or network with others. All his apprentices have showcased confident coaching and leadership skills from early on and when asked how they had developed these, all said that Garreth had supported them with hours of mentoring and sharing activity ideas. He provides challenging opportunities then actively nurtures and empowers his apprentices to succeed in them. It’s this combination of ‘push’ with encouragement, and a genuine belief in his apprentices’ abilities that makes Garreth Chambers a standout mentor in the Coach Core community.

“His genuine interest in their future success is evident in the guidance and encouragement he provides, demonstrating a mentorship that extends beyond the program’s duration.”


Richy Duggan

Sunderland Community Action Group (Northumberland, Tyne & Wear)
Richy wants to help people develop in the communities he works in, particularly young people who may have struggled in traditional educational settings. He enables young people from hard to reach backgrounds to go on a journey with his organisation Sunderland Community Action Group (SCAG) by employing apprentices that are potentially not yet ready for the world of work. In doing this he knows he is setting himself up to have to go above and beyond with the support for these young people – and he is happy to do it. He has guided 4 apprentices through the programme so far and is currently working with another 3. One of them has gone on to become a full-time member of staff at SCAG and a role model in their community.

“Richy is a real inspiration to his apprentices and has been from the start of the Northumberland, Tyne and Wear programme.”


David Simmons

Changing Lives Community Services (Essex)
David has had some challenging experiences as a Coach Core mentor, but over and again he has given up his time to help these young people make the transition to working life – including support with travel, with safeguarding issues and with finances. One apprentice in particular has thrived under David’s mentorship, has been trusted to start his own groups and teach football in highly regarded school. That apprentice is likely to take up a full-time role at the end of the programme and is ready to mentor the new apprentices coming through thanks to the work David has done.

“David’s commitment to his apprentices has been unwavering and he is a great role model to them.”

Our Sponsors

Lifetime Training and Amazing Apprenticeships are proud sponsors of Coach Core Awards.

Lifetime Training provides cutting edge skills training, designed to help people exceed their potential and give businesses the ultimate competitive advantage. They will be sponsoring the Mentor of the Year and Employer of the Year categories.

Amazing Apprenticeships are a leading organisation in the education sector, working with schools, colleges and employers, tackling misconceptions and promoting the benefits of apprenticeships and technical education. They will be sponsoring the post-event reception.




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