Westminster Foundation Partnered to Create 100 New Apprentice Opportunities

Coach Core and the Westminster Foundation, supported by CIMPSA, Active Cheshire and Active Lancashire, have launched a new partnership to deliver an apprenticeship programme across Lancashire and Cheshire, creating 100 new apprentice opportunities for young people from deprived areas of the region over the next 5 years.

By Belinda Bradley · 6th June 2024

The Westminster Foundation, an independent grant making trust linked to Grosvenor and the Duke of Westminster, which provides funding to support organisations that play a role in preventing long-term systematic problems for children and young people has awarded a grant of £500,000 to Coach Core to deliver the sports coaching apprenticeship with local employers, aimed at 16–24-year-olds.

The first cohort of apprentices are expected to start the 15-month programme in September. The apprenticeships will provide formal Level 2 and Level 3 sports coaching qualifications alongside full-time employment with local sports or youth-based employers with apprentices getting hands on experience of coaching in schools, youth centres and sports clubs.

Graduates will be expected to move into employment, training or further education after the programme with many going on to coach sport and physical activity in their local communities, supporting people to be more active. It is estimated that the apprentices will deliver over 100,000 coaching sessions to nearly 1.5 million session participants over the five-year programme.

We currently work with several employer partners from national organisations including England Boxing and Nuffield Health to local organisations across at the heart of communities like Salford Red Devils, Your Trust Rochdale and Diane Modahl Sport Foundation all part of their Greater Manchester programme.

The new funding will allow us to work alongside local employers to deliver a sports coaching apprenticeship programme in Lancashire and Cheshire for the first time. The Westminster Foundation has an active grant giving programme across Cheshire and Lancashire and supports several charities including Chester FC Community Trust, Cheshire Young Carers and Active Cheshire.

Nearly half of apprentices who graduated through our programme last year lived in the 30% most deprived areas of the UK and we have worked closely with CIMPSA, Active Cheshire and Active Lancashire to identify areas and focus recruitment where barriers and lack of opportunities for young people are most prevalent.

"This support from the Westminster Foundation will be transformational in giving young people from Cheshire and Lancashire potentially life changing opportunities to work in and develop careers in sports coaching and but will also have a wider benefit in terms of helping local communities become more active. We know that there has been a decline in entry-level apprenticeship starts (level 2) in the area, so this funding and programme is vital to helping address that.

We’re looking forward to working alongside Active Cheshire, Active Lancashire and CIMSPA and local employers in the coming months but most importantly welcoming and working with our new apprentices in September.

Paul Thompson, Director of People and Learning

“We have a long-term commitment and strong track record of supporting young people in Cheshire and Lancashire and share the same values as Coach Core, so we are delighted to be working with them to help deliver this vital apprenticeship programme. Sport can be such a huge vehicle for positive change in society, whether for the individual apprentices, the young people they will inspire as role models, and for the local communities who benefit from their future employment.”

Kate Brown, Westminster Foundation & Philanthropy Director


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