Blackburn Rovers Community Trust is proud to confirm the launch of one of its most high-profile partnerships to date, after entering into an agreement with Places For People to expand their life-changing Premier League Kicks programme.
The official club charity is joining forces with one of the UK's largest property and leisure management, development and regeneration companies, forming an arrangment worth £30,000 which will provide exciting opportunities for local youngsters in three Lancashire boroughs.
Across Blackburn with Darwen, Chorley and Rossendale, the concept aimed at young people aged eight and over will be providing new chances to play sport, coupled with intervention programmes aimed at preventing attendees from being tempted into crime or other anti-social activities. Trained staff will also be identifying those who could benefit from referals into education or employment opportunities.
The Premier League Kicks concept uses the power of football and the Blackburn Rovers brand to help make positive changes in local communites, with notable reductions in anti-social behaviour recorded in areas where the project is delivered. The new funding from Places For People will allow more weekly sessions to take place, targeted in areas close to where much of the company's housing stock is located, especially those in greatest need of additional recreational opportunities.
At least two new jobs relating to the delivery of the programme will be created, adding to the overall value of the contribution to the local area by recruiting new talent from the communities served by Places For People.
Gary Robinson, chief executive of Blackburn Rovers Community Trust, is proud that the two organisations can utilise their shared resources and vision for the local community to achieve positive outcomes, explaining: "We're delighted to be working with partners who are as socially conscious as ourselves, and this new concept that we've been preparing over several months will make everyday differences to local lives.
"We are both like-minded organisations who are embedded in our local communities, therefore making us perfectly placed to identify the needs of local people and address them by offering chances such as those that we are about to create.
"The Premier League have entrusted us to deliver the Kicks concept on their behalf thanks to our proven track record of making a difference over the past seven years and this expansion is going to help us to expand that potential to a much wider area within our traditional boundaries.
"Time and again, through Premier League Kicks, we've kept young people away from anti-social behaviour by offering them a more stimulating sporting alternative and have even helped people to find support where they need it for personal issues, assisted with mentoring, or identified chances to improve their skill base, employability or volunteering options.
"We can't wait to create more success stories of this nature thanks to Places For People's support."
The first wave of new Premier League Kicks sessions in partnership between Blackburn Rovers Community Trust and Places For People are provisionally scheduled to commence within the next month, with details of timings and locations to be confirmed in the coming weeks.