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Apprenticeship Scheme wins Land Rover Innovation Award

Travis PerkinsSponsored by Travis Perkins

The Apprenticeship Scheme has seen 10 young people have six months' employment throughout the Saints organisation - including the community, media, marketing, retail and conference departments as well as the Saints Study Centre - and work towards an NVQ Level 2 at the same time.

All of the young people involved are aged between 16 and 18 and were not previously in education or employment.

The first wave of the Apprenticeship Scheme has been so successful that from September the club will be expanding the numbers from 10 to 16. Full job descriptions and details of how to apply will be announced very soon.

Community officer Rowland Winter, who runs the Apprenticeship Scheme, is delighted to have won the award.

"The Apprenticeship Scheme was completely uncharted territory for us when we first started developing it last September," he said. "So everyone at the club is very happy that it has received this recognition. It means a great deal, not just for us but for the apprentices as well.

"The Land Rover Innovation Award not just vindicates our decision to start the Apprenticeship Scheme in the first place but also our plans to expand it in the future. We will have 16 apprentices in the next wave of the scheme, and I'm sure it will continue to go from strength to strength in the future."

Saints chief executive Allan Robson praised both the Apprenticeship Scheme and the work done by the community team as a whole, who were Highly Commended by the Awards Panel for the extensive work carried out in the community throughout the 2011/12 season.

"Sian and the community team put in a great deal of hard work throughout the entire year, not just in the rugby season," he said. "Much of what they do goes unseen by the wider public, but their work is certainly appreciated by everyone within both at Franklin's Gardens and the many schools, charities, junior clubs and other organisations which the department comes into contact with throughout the year.

"It sounds a bit clichéd to say that what they do changes lives, but the Apprenticeship Scheme really shows that we can play a big part in helping young people turn their lives around.

"I'm delighted for Sian, Rowland and the rest of the team that the Apprenticeship Scheme won the Land Rover Innovation Award and congratulate them for this and the Commendation received by the whole Saints community department.

"Over the next few years we will be looking to expand our community work even further, not least due to the full addition of the Saints Study Centre into the club. The Study Centre already provides educational support to over 50 schools, and now that we have taken on full responsibility for the Centre - following the withdrawal of county council funding - we will have the flexibility to use its facilities with the entire community."

Companies who are interested in supporting the award-winning work of the club's community department and the educational support provided to thousands of schoolchildren by the Saints Study Centre should contact Allan Robson, chief executive, by emailing [email protected]

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