Top Premier League clubs are set to provide hundreds of unique training opportunities to boost the confidence of jobseekers and prepare them for the workplace.
Employment Minister Jim Knight announced the launch of the initiative at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge stadium today alongside Richard Scudamore, Chief Executive of the Premier League, and Jon Sheehy of The New Football Pools.
Premier League into Work is being delivered at Chelsea, Everton, Sunderland and Portsmouth football clubs. They are working with the Premier League, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and local employers to give jobseekers the skills and abilities they need to find work, while improving their fitness levels and football skills.
Jim Knight said:
“We are giving everyone the support they need to find work, and programmes like Premier League into Work will help us reach that goal. The project uses football coaching and wider training courses to develop skills and boost confidence which are vital to help people prepare for the workplace.
“Premier League into Work is a unique opportunity for jobseekers to improve their self-esteem, work skills and fitness levels. People on the course will work closely with football clubs and local employers to improve their chances of finding a job.”
Chelsea FC manager Carlo Ancelotti said:
“I have seen first hand the huge amount of work that the club does in communities all over London, improving the lives of thousands of people. Chelsea is helping to give unemployed people the support they need to get back on their feet and find work again and it’s great to see the launch of the Premier League into Work project here at Chelsea.”
Premier League Chief Executive Richard Scudamore said:
“Premier League into Work shows yet again the unique opportunity that football clubs have to make a positive impact on people’s lives.
“Our clubs have a deservedly strong reputation for the quality of schemes they deliver in the communities around them. As part of our wider Creating Chances programme, they are already helping improve people’s health, better young people’s education and even tackle crime and anti-social behaviour.
“Football is an incredibly powerful vehicle and can make a real difference. Through Premier League into Work, clubs will now also assist hundreds of unemployed people gain the skills, experience and confidence they need to get themselves a job.”
Premier League into Work is funded by the DWP and The New Football Pools, for the Premier League.
Ian Penrose, CEO of Sportech PLC, owner and operator of The New Football Pools said:
“The Pools has played a key part in supporting football throughout its history. In the last 86 years, we have donated £1.1billion to sport, arts and good causes with £535million specifically going into British football since 1975.
“Whilst in the past we have invested in infrastructure, bricks and mortar and the physical aspects of making football safer, now The New Football Pools is heavily focused on community programmes and the many social aspects in and around football. At a time when many communities and individual football fans may need the support to help get back into employment and training, we are delighted to be working with the Premier League and the DWP in this exciting new scheme – Premier League into Work.”
The courses will help develop interviewing skills, job search techniques, CV preparation, health and fitness, and football training, led by award-winning coaches.
Each course will last ten weeks and each participant will undertake a two-week work placement.
Jobcentre Plus advisers will identify suitable jobseekers, within specified boundaries of participating clubs, to join the courses. They are open to anyone who has been claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance for six months or more and is not eligible for or participating in other contracted schemes. Some people will be eligible for early referral.
Premier League into Work clubs will work with a wide range of employers, including local councils, who have committed to providing work placements and job opportunities. These include opportunities in hospitality, catering, transport, mechanics and local radio.
Premier League into Work is based on the successful Support Employment programme which is currently being run by 20 Scottish football clubs.
Notes to editors
1. Premier League into Work is based on the successful programme, Support Employment, which is being delivered by 20 Scottish Football League Clubs. The English clubs have worked with Scottish clubs to develop the course content.
2. Four Premier League football clubs – Chelsea, Everton, Portsmouth and Sunderland – will be responsible for the delivery of the Premier League into Work initiative. The courses are available from October 2009 to March 2011 (June 2011 in Portsmouth).
3. There will be a minimum of 22 courses with a maximum of 352 participants.
4. Each course will last ten weeks for up to 16 participants for a maximum of 16 hours attendance per week, and each participant will undertake a two-week work placement.
5. Premier League into Work is funded by DWP and The New Football Pools, for the Premier League. The New Football Pools agreed to donate £206,400 to the Premier League for the project; the DWP has agreed to provide match funding of £375,000. For more on the good cause activities undertaken by the New Football Pools, read here.
6. For more information on the Premier League’s Creating Chances programme, see the following wide-ranging report into its activity.
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