CashBack for Communities Candidates vs Police Scotland Football Match
Fri 24th September 2021
Today marks the celebration of the latest group of candidates completing their 8 week CashBack for Communities – Towards New Futures course run by the Rangers Charity Foundation at Ibrox. This group of young people took on Police Scotland on Friday 24th September in a friendly football match at Benburb FC in Govan. After a tight game, the CashBack candidates clinched a 2-1 victory and ex-Rangers player Steven Smith presented the trophy and medals.
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 1 SQA Award which will help with their employability prospects and confidence.
“Police Scotland are a really important partner for us and as part of their Pitchin’ In programme, come in weekly to talk to the groups about topics like social media footprint and hate crime. The transformation from historic negative interactions with candidates to new relationships being built and these weekly visits becoming something everyone looks forward to has been remarkable.
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:
“The Pitchin In’ Programme provides an excellent opportunity for Police Scotland officers to engage with hard to reach members of our communities. The programme uses 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 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 will 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 course starts on 18th October. For more info contact Derek.Rhoddan@rangers.co.uk