Two local lads honoured
Foysol Ahmed will receive the "outstanding volunteer award" while
It will be a day to remember next Tuesday for two young people who attend Oldham Athletic Community Trust's Kickz Project, as they travel down to Chelsea's Stamford Bridge to receive national awards. Abdullah Al-Masoom is to collect the "inspiring young person award."
Oldham's Kickz Project has been running for five years proving to be a massive success.
The project is based in the Coldhurst and Westwood areas of Oldham, with sessions taking place three times each week.
* ·Tuesday (7pm-9.30pm at Oldham Academy North
* ·Thursday (5.30pm-8.30pm) at Robin Hill Youth Centre
* ·Saturday (7.30pm-9.30pm at OBA Millennium Centre.
Since 2008 Kickz staff have worked with over 500 young people delivering over 40,000 hours worth of provision within the Coldhurst and Westwood areas.
The young people who attend the Kickz project have played in both regional and national competitions as well as friendly matches against clubs such as Everton.
From the project 18 young people have received nationally recognised qualifications, with two then gaining paid employment by Oldham Athletic Community Trust. The project also has a successful mentoring scheme, with young people not only attending the sessions but then going onto to volunteer within the project.
Abdullah Al-Masoom, Oldham Athletic Kickz inspiring young person winner, said: "Kickz has changed my life. If it wasn't for kickz I have no idea what I would be doing.
"My guess is that I'd end up in trouble with the police. You can easily get influenced from the area I'm from.
"Kickz has become a big part of my life and we're almost like a family. I'm honoured to be part of the Kickz team and the project has inspired me. Hopefully in the future I can help youngsters change their lives.”
The Kickz project has seven main aims:
* Help young people achieve more through positive, meaningful activities
* Reduce crime and anti-social behaviour
* Break down barriers between police and young people
* Encourage volunteering in communities
* Increase playing, coaching and officiating opportunities
* Create routes into education, training and employment
* Increase young people's interest in football
Foysol Ahmed, Kickz outstanding volunteer winner, added: "Kickz is a fantastic way to come and interact with others. Through playing football it's easy to fit in and make new friends.
"I have gained a good relationship with the Kickz coaches and got to meet with new people which has been a pleasure. I've been given the opportunity to do voluntary work and that will help me in the future which is great.
"If Kickz wasn't running in the area I'd probably be lazy, stay in and play FIFA or just hang around on the streets. Kickz gives you something structured, something organised and something safe to do. There isn't much else available to do in the area. If you ask me Kickz is fantastic.”
Martin Vose, OACT Participation Officer, said: "Kickz is vital to both the area of Coldhurst and Westwood but also to the community and young people who live there.
"We offer the young people a chance to do something positive with their spare time, whether that be attending the sessions to receiving mentoring and volunteering opportunities.
"Working in partnership with local organisations and businesses is key the Kickz project succeeding. We are always keen to build new partnerships with the local residents and local businesses within the area."
If you would require more information about the Kickz project, or would like to see how you could help, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pictured are Foysol Ahmed and Abdullah Al-Masoom.