Apprentices strike out in community roles at Port Vale FC

A partnership between Port Vale Foundation and Stoke on Trent College has seen five young people successfully complete Apprenticeships with the club’s Community department.

The Port Vale Foundation, which operates as a registered charity, now employs three former apprentices in full time roles as community sports coaches, delivering a range of community sessions.

Former apprentices Lewis Beeston, Drew Miller and Zachery Siwiec, aged between 17 and 20, are now in permanent roles at the club as community coaches, following successful completion of their Apprenticeships in Sports Activity Leadership.

They are joined by current apprentice Olivia, who works as a business administrator at the Foundation, and Muhammad Anis Raza, aged 19, who is completing an apprenticeship in Activity leadership.

Tom Sherratt, Head of Community at Port Vale Foundation. He says: “All five apprentices have been a real asset to our work, and we couldn’t survive without them.

Olivia does a fantastic job front of house and provides invaluable support to all departments within the Foundation in her role. She’s an extremely valuable member of the team, and the same goes for Anis. Anis came from a cricket background and we’ve been able to introduce new sports activities into our community programmes as a result of Anis’ skill set – building a stronger, more diverse relationship with the local community.”

Our coaches work across the Foundation’s themes of delivery. These include school sports, football development, social inclusion, education, health and disability. Our mission is to create opportunities through the power of sport and recreation to engage, motivate and inspire people from all sections of our community, helping them to fulfill their potential.

He explains: “Apprentices have become key to our community programmes and our partnership with Stoke on Trent College works well. Hannah and Katy from the college have both supported us with the recruitment of apprentices. They advertise vacancies, sift applications, shortlist candidates and make sure that the ones who are the right fit get through to interview. Hannah also sits on the panel at the job interviews.

The Apprenticeships are just one part of Port Vale Foundation’s partnership with Stoke on Trent College.

The two organisations also provide a joint football and education programme, which allows students to study at the college whilst taking part in an elite football programme. Students represent both the club and college during training and match days throughout the academic year. This allows students to develop career opportunities through work placements, level 1 coaching courses and potential part time work within the Foundation.

The Business Development Associate from Stoke on Trent College, comments: “Our partnership with Port Vale has provided some fantastic opportunities for young people to join the Football Club’s Foundation, learning and working alongside experienced professional coaches. They are now out in the community providing an exceptionally valuable role – not just for the Club, but for the younger kids that they are inspiring in their work as community coaches, at summer clubs and after school activities.”

For more information on Apprenticeships contact the team on 01782 603603 or email:

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