Midfielder Leon Osman visited Parklands Learning Centre on Tuesday to meet with young people benefitting from a scheme ran by Everton and the Prince's Trust.
Prince's Trust ambassador Osman got involved with an ice-breaking game to find out more about the young people in attendance before the participants took it in turns to tell the 33-year-old about their experiences of The Prince’s Trust Get Started with Football programme and how the short course has helped them develop new skills that have enabled them to move forwards with their lives.
Everton in the Community works with The Prince’s Trust and Merseyside Fire and Rescue to deliver a number of programmes to support disadvantaged 13 to 30-year-olds who are unemployed and those struggling at school and at risk of exclusion.
Last year, ‘Get Started’ engaged 2,539 young people across the UK through areas such as sports and the arts, boosting self-esteem.
The Prince's Trust Football Initiative, funded by The Premier League and the PFA, has helped more than 22,500 disadvantaged young people through football since 1997.
On the Get Started with Football course, young people learn coaching skills, gain a level one football coaching award and build their teamwork, communication skills and confidence.
After the programme has finished they receive three months support to help them find a job or move into education.
Some of the young people Osman met with are now in full and part-time employment with Everton in the Community, coaching and working as community youth workers for the charity.
"I’ve been a Prince’s Trust ambassador for a number of years now and I always enjoy spending time with the young people on the courses and hearing about their journeys," said Osman. "The stories I have heard today about how The Prince’s Trust has helped them all develop are really inspiring and I wish them all the best for the future.”
Alison Mattocks of The Prince’s Trust added: “It is thanks to our relationships with fantastic clubs like Everton that we are able to provide disadvantaged young people with expert training to help them forge a career.
"It is also so inspiring for our young people to meet fantastic ambassadors like Leon, who can provide advice and guidance for them to achieve their ambitions like he has.”
There are currently more than one in four young people struggling to find work in Liverpool. Three in four young people supported by The Prince’s Trust move into work, education or training.