The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has continued its partnership with youth charity The Prince’s Trust and the Northern Racing College (NRC) to deliver the second “Get Started with Horse Care” programme for unemployed young people in the area.
The programme, which started on Monday 14th May, was held at the Northern Racing College in Doncaster, where 14 disadvantaged young people from the Yorkshire and Humber area took part in a free residential course. The aim of the course is to help young people gain the skills and confidence they need to get into work or training. Get Started with Horse Care helps to boost their confidence by helping them to work with horses and learn about the racing industry.
The five day programme resulted in the candidates gaining entry level qualifications in horse care. They learnt practical skills in handling and grooming horses and also paddock maintenance, basic first aid, team work and presentation skills, as well as encouraging them to work in a team. They were also given the opportunity to ride the college’s ex-racehorses every day.
The Prince’s Trust provides support for three months after the programme to help young people into employment, education, volunteering or training. Last year, The Trust helped more than 4,500 young people in Yorkshire and The Humber, giving them the skills and confidence to find a job. More than three in four moved into work, education or training.
The programme can also offer the opportunity for young people to access further training. From the NRC programme in 2011 seven candidates entered further education as a result; six on the Foundation Apprenticeship at the NRC and one through Doncaster College, which has strong links with the NRC.
Rebecca Milne, Programme Executive at The Prince’s Trust, said:
“It is fantastic to see how much the programme boosts the young peoples’ personal development skills. After this week many will be enthusiastic and motivated to apply for opportunities in further learning, training or employment and The Prince’s Trust will continue to help them on this journey”.
Dawn Goodfellow, Chief Executive at the Northern Racing College, said:
“This group of young people have been an absolute pleasure to work with. They have been enthusiastic and keen to learn and everyone here has enjoyed watching their self confidence and skills grow through being part of the programme. For most it was their first experience of being away from home and for some their first experience of being around horses. They have worked well together and developed both independent living and employable skills through the activities they have taken part in. We are very much looking forward to welcoming some of them back onto the Foundation Course and the first steps of a career in racing”.
Sara Hay-Jahans, Head of Industry Recruitment and Training for the BHA, said:
“The BHA is delighted to be able to support this opportunity for young people to experience the fun and fulfilment of working with horses and possibly a career in racing. Developing a relationship with horses is similar to developing a relationship with a peer – it helps teach trust, empathy and responsibility and often gives a sense of purpose”.
The BHA has been a supporter of The Prince’s Trust since 2008, and works with the charity to help improve the lives of young people through sport.