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North West Games Maker Case Studies
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PersonalBest Case Studies: 15 Sport 4 Life Learners who successfully completed the programme have been offered Games Maker roles at the London 2012 Olympic or Paralympic Games.

Read their stories here; PersonalBest Case Studies
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Greater Manchester
Manchester
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Active ImageJustin Gbla, 29 from Blackley in Manchester moved to Manchester from London 4 years ago and had been unable to find employment for 2 years when he came on Personal Best. He did the programme with Accrington College and found that travelling by bus each morning from Manchester was a personal challenge. Justin is an enthusiastic event volunteer and has clocked up an amazing 7 -800 event volunteering hours volunteering at Sports events in Manchester. Justin has volunteered at The BT Paralympic World Cup, The Taekwondo World Championships, Sky Ride, World Lacrosse Championships and BUPA Great Manchester Run many times.

Justin says one of the major benefits of major event volunteering is the free clothing he is issued with, the majority of which he sends back home to Sierra Leone as he doesn’t really need it! One of the best moments for Justin was the awards ceremony at Manchester City FC where he got to meet Sebastian Coe and appeared in the local newspaper which he has framed! Justin has now found employment and works for Travelodge.

Justin has been selected as a Games Maker for event services in The Basketball Arena at the Olympic Games. “It will be brilliant- an experience of a lifetime”

Justin requires £1,140 for his accommodation costs to take up his Games Maker role.

Trafford
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Active ImageBen Doyle , 24 from Trafford, Manchester found out about Personal Best through Fairbridge and completed the programme with Trafford College. He has never had a job.

Ben says, “Taking Personal Best gave me confidence that I didn’t have before. I particularly enjoyed the volunteering element of the programme where we volunteered at some boxing events.” Ben’s lifelong ambition is to join the Territorial Army.

Ben has secured a Games Maker role with Event Services at the Paralympic Games at Excel.

Ben requires £662.15 for his accommodation costs to take up his Games Maker role.

Withington
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Active ImageStephen Bradley, 54 from Withington had been unemployed for 17 years when he found out about Personal Best through Manchester Event Volunteers who he has volunteered for since the Commonwealth Games in 2002 in Manchester where he volunteered showing people to their seats in the stadium and as Car Park Attendant. Stephen is a passionate volunteer and has a CV “as long as his arm” in volunteering. Stephen is also a keen marathon runner with a PB of 2hrs 37mins that he achieved in 1984 in Boston. Stephen completed The Manchester Marathon last week in 3hrs 55mins.

Stephen says what he most enjoyed about the course he did at Trafford College was being selected from the group to draw a large picture of an Olympic Games visitor but was afraid of using the computers on the course. He is very proud to have been the first learner to complete the course at Trafford College.

Stephen will be volunteering in a dream role with Event Services in The Olympic Stadium at the Olympic Games. “I’m so excited! I’ve told half the world. I told everyone in the CAB, everyone on the bus and everyone in the supermarket the day I found out” he says. “I just can’t stop telling people”.

Stephen requires £1,628 for his accommodation costs to take up his Games Maker role and £70 for his travel costs to collect his uniform.

Bury
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Active ImageMick Priestley, 48 from Radcliffe attended the Personal Best programme with Sport 4 Life in Bury. He found out about the course through Bury Drug and Alcohol Services. Mick had been an Infantryman Signaller in the 1st Battalion The Royal Green Jackets and had been unemployed for 4 years prior to undertaking Personal Best. Mick says Personal Best was “Brilliant! The best course he has ever been on as it was so easy-going and well presented by the Sport 4 Life tutors”. Whilst on the course he volunteered at SMART recovery.

Mick said he found standing up in front of the group particularly challenging but he has progressed to volunteer for Time 4 Change in Bury.

Mick has secured a Games Maker role in the Athletes’ Village at the Paralympic Games. “It makes me feel really proud to be a Games Maker. I am really looking forward to helping make the Games the best they can be for the athletes”.

Mick has been supported by £1,030 from Greater Manchester Police Asset Recovery Fund to take up his Games Maker role.

Bury
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Active ImageSean Nagle, 43 from Bury in Greater Manchester undertook the Personal Best programme with Sport 4 Life in Bury and had been unemployed for 4 years prior to coming onto the programme which he heard about through Bury Drug and Alcohol Services. His tutor describes Sean as very supportive to all the other learners on the course. Sean undertook volunteer gardening work at Park Hall whilst undertaking Personal Best which he said was very enjoyable. Seam enjoyed the camaraderie with the Sport 4 Life staff and the other learners on the programme most but says he found standing up in front of the group and talking a personal challenge.

Sean has just completed his English L2 with Bury Adult Learning which he says he, ”Can’t believe I now have L2 English” and is taking his Maths exam in two weeks. Sean was fortunate to be selected to visit The Olympic Park in March 2011 and also visited the LOCOG offices.

Sean has secured a Games Maker role with Event Services at Excel in the Olympic Games.
“This will be brilliant opportunity! It’s going to be amazing! It means a lot to me that I am being given this opportunity. I hope someone can help support me to go!”

Sean has been supported by £471 from Greater Manchester Police Asset Recovery Fund for some of his accommodation costs to go to the Games.  But Sean still requires a further £2,412 towards his accommodation and travel costs .

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Lancashire
Rossendale
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Active ImageWilliam Talbot, 45 from Bacup heard about Personal Best on the internet and took the programme in Bacup with Accrington College. Prior to Personal Best William had been unemployed 2 years. William says he enjoyed all of the course, in particular how everyone supported each other and worked as a team. William volunteered at College open days for the volunteering element of the programme. Since taking the programme William has successfully found employment as a delivery driver.

Bill successfully secured a Paralympic Games Maker role driving with The Transport Team as he has a minibus driving qualification for disabled.  Bill said he is delighted with his role as, “I will be taking part in something I never dreamed I would have the chance to do”.

Bill requires £1,156 for his accommodation costs to take up his Games Maker role plus £70 for travel costs to collect his uniform.

Hyndburn
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Active ImageJonathan Savage, 33 from Accrington is an Olympic Fanatic! He says he has watched every Olympic Games since he was young and likes to watch all the events live, staying up all night if he has to when it’s held in the other side of the world.

Jonathan found out about Personal Best from his local Job Centre and attended the Darwen course with Accrington College. He had been unemployed for 5 months but he found the course was useful as it helped him learn how to write covering letters and practise his interview skills. This has helped Jonathan secure employment as a school caretaker.

Jonathan has been selected as Games Maker for Command Control and Communication at The Water Park during the Olympic Games and is, “looking forward to taking in the atmosphere of the greatest event this country will ever see.”

Jonathan has been supported by £500 from Hyndburn Council. He still requires requires £1,910.14 for his accommodation costs to take up his Games Maker role plus £70 for travel costs to collect his uniform.

Accrington
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Active ImageMohammed Parvez, 27 from Accrington first heard about Personal Best from his Job Centre Advisor. He attended the programme at Darwen Community Centre with Accrington and Rossendale College. He had been unemployed for 12 months when he first attended the course and had begun to lose self-belief that he could achieve. He particularly enjoyed learning about the Olympic Games as previously he knew nothing about its history etc. Mohammed is currently volunteering as sports coach and working on his Maths and English at Accrington College. He has language skills as he also speaks Urdu and Punjabi.
 
Mohammed has been offered a Games Maker role at the Paralympics which he describes a “life-changing opportunity”. “What I have gained from this programme is the self-belief that I can commit myself to something and confidence in my own ability”.

Long Term Mohammed would like to become a teacher or professional sports coach.

Mohammed has been supported by £500 from Hyndburn Council towards his accommodation costs.  He still requires £338.10 to take up his Games Maker Role.

Chorley
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Active ImageAnna Whitehead, 21 is one of our youngest Personal Best Games Makers from Chorley who been unemployed for 3 years when she came on the Accrington College course which she heard about in her local paper. She was low in confidence and didn’t know how to communicate with people when she began the programme. Her proudest achievement was that she came up with the idea for carol singing event for charity in Chorley which they ran as a group and as part of the course. ”I would never have dreamed of standing up and singing carols in public dressed as Santa”. Since undertaking the Personal Best programme Anna has progressed onto L2 Fitness Instructor course with Accrington College and has since secured employment in a local gym where she is working towards a L3 Personal Trainer award.

Anna has secured a Games Maker role with The Transport Team at Earls Court at the Olympics. Anna says she is “proud to be part of the event. It is a once in a lifetime experience”

Anna requires £2,057.64 for her accommodation costs to take up her Games Maker role.

Ecclestone
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Active ImageJoyce Ruttle, 60 from Eccleston in Lancashire heard about Personal Best in her local paper and attended the course run by Accrington College in Chorley. Joyce had not worked for 7 years and found the course particularly useful to help bring her up to speed with health and safety, CV writing etc. She found role playing interviews challenging, in particular when they were videoed and played back to the whole class, but she was glad she did it as she gained a lot from it. Joyce is “proud to be helping the country to make the event the best it can be and impress the rest of the world.”

Joyce has secured a role as a Games Maker with The Transport Team in Manchester.

As Joyce is volunteering in Manchester her Games Maker costs are covered.

Chorley
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Active ImageCatherine Wareing, Catherine is our oldest learner. At 68 Catherine became a grandmother figure for all the learners on the Chorley course run by Accrington Course. Her leadership skills were prevalent on the course and she developed a Carol singing group from the learners on the course who sang to raise funds for local charities.

Catherine says she enjoyed the diversity of ages, abilities and backgrounds of learners on the course. Catherine also volunteered as a Selection Event Volunteer interviewing prospective Games Makers at Salford Quays and since taking Personal Best she has become Company Secretary for Chorley Arts Partnership Charity where the course was based.

Catherine is delighted to be closely involved with the Olympic Games as, ”I have always enjoyed games since I was young and it is exciting to be part of such a historical event”

Catherine has secured a Paralympic Games Maker role with workforce volunteers at Excel.

Catherine does not require support to volunteer

Chorley
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Active ImageSandra Wootten, 47 from Chorley heard about Personal Best from Accrington College where she undertook their programme in Chorley. Sandra describes herself as an, “Out and about person”, who enjoys the outdoors and she particularly enjoyed the volunteering she did at Yarrow Valley Country Park as part of the programme. She found using computers on the course a bit of a personal challenge as she had been out of work for many years. But she says Bev the tutor helped her through these difficulties so she quickly overcome them. Sandra has secured part time employment at a stables since taking the programme.
 
Sandra successfully secured a Games Maker role at the Olympic Games with The Media and Transport Team in the Olympic Park. ”It will be different and challenging and a great experience that I can pass onto my grandchildren in the future.”

Sandra has applied for a £250 Personal Best Bursary from SkillsActive for her excess travel costs to take up her Games Maker role as her accommodation is outside the Travelcard zone.

Burnley
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Active ImageCarrie Radcliffe, 24 from Padiham near Burnley is a lone parent with 3 young children. She attended the Burnley course run by Sport 4 Life which she found out about through Waheed at Burnley Sports Development unit. Carrie was only able to access the programme as Sport 4 Life provided her with support with Childcare costs. Carrie says what she particularly enjoyed about the course was meeting new people, but being the only female in a class tested her patience.

Carrie has been offered a Games Maker role with the transport team in Manchester. “I just can’t wait, it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity”.

Carrie is volunteering in Manchester therefore her games Maker costs are covered and would particularly like to thank her Dad who will look after her children while she volunteers.

Cheshire
Great Sutton
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Active ImageJonathan Butler, 19 is our youngest Games Maker from Great Sutton in Cheshire and undertook the programme with Strategy Training and Recruitment in Ellesmere Port. He says he found the course really interesting and, “The lady who taught the course was very nice”. He says he found the writing in the book and some of the health and safety he had to learn difficult and is really proud he achieved the qualification.

Jonathan is currently at College undertaking a, “Vocational Studies for Working Life” course and looking forward to volunteering at the Boccia test event this weekend.

Jonathan has secured a Games Maker role at the Wheelchair Basketball Arena in the Olympic park in the Paralympic Games. He says he “is looking forward to a new experience the Games will be fantastic”

Jonathan requires £947 for his accommodation costs to take up his Games Maker role.


26 Learners have applied to The Manchester Ambassador programme and will be supporting the delivery of the Olympic Football at Old Trafford. 5 have already heard they have roles.

The L1 Certificate in Preparation for event Volunteering is not just a programme of learning, it is a programme of support and engagement that will continue way beyond the life of the programme.

For more information contact  PersonalBest
Tel: 0843 212 0070

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