Prince’s Trust Team Celebrates Success
On Monday 10th November some of the hundreds of young people who take part in the Prince’s Trust programme each year were celebrating after winning awards at the East Midlands Celebrate Success Awards 2014.
The awards are a chance to recognise some of the East Midlands’ most inspiring young people for their outstanding achievements despite facing challenges such as unemployment, depression and family issues.
The Community Impact Award, sponsored by Lafarge Tarmac was won by Kettering Team 38. The thirteen young people of Kettering Team 38 were unemployed and disengaged when they signed up to the Team programme which is run by Tresham College Of Further and Higher Education.
As part of their programme all teams work together to give back to their community, the Kettering Team 38 decided to design and build a sustainable, eco-friendly vegetable garden at Grange School, Kettering – in just 10 days.
After presenting their unique ideas to the whole school, they then carried out fundraising which included a fancy dress abseil, car wash and cake sale.
Despite torrential downpours and gruelling manual labour, the team worked incessantly. They lifted back-breaking concrete posts, took out overgrown lawn, added 10 tonnes of top soil and planted vegetables, herbs and an apple tree. In four specially constructed raised sleeper beds. They also designed an outdoor learning area with sturdy sleeper benches.
The team formed a strong bond and transcended cultural differences while finding their own personal strengths. Every member moved on to a job, college course or voluntary work, invigorated with self-belief and a sense of achievement.
“I used to really struggle to be myself in big groups but this project helped me overcome my fears,” says Jamie, 17.
Northamptonshire’s Prince’s Trust was also delighted with another finalist for the Young Achiever of the Year Award (sponsored by Samsung) at the awards; Martin Meeuwissen. Martin experienced violence throughout his childhood; the trauma caused a lasting speech impediment that led to constant bullying. Already experiencing mental illness at eight years-old, his mum’s sudden death made life even more unbearable.
By 14, Martin was numbing his pain with class A drugs. He managed to pass some GCSEs but drifted between jobs.
When Martin joined the Team programme, it provided a vital confidence boost, and after completing the programme Martin volunteered with subsequent Team intakes. As a Young Ambassador, he helped draw millions of pounds in funding. He now works full-time as a Job Ambassador with The Trust.
Martin won Tresham College Learner of the Year as well as the Breakthrough Award at the national Celebrate Success Awards in 2013 and was a finalist in the Pride of Britain Prince’s Trust Achiever of the Year category.
His ability to break down barriers, build trust and develop himself are as remarkable as his unrelenting selflessness.
“I’m just so grateful to be able to help The Trust do its much needed work,” he says.
For more information about Northamptonshire’s Prince’s Trust Programmes please visit www.tresham.ac.uk/princes-trust-team-programmeBack to news