This Thursday is GCSE Results Day. For some this will mean a day of great achievement having secured the grades they need to go on to further education or employment, but for some it will be a day of disappointment and worry. We want to prove to young people that grades aren’t the ‘be all and end all’ and there are other options for people who simply haven’t found their feet in the classroom.
What is the HITZ programme?
The award winning HITZ programme tackles some of the greatest challenges facing young people today – unemployment, crime and disillusionment. Delivered nationally by Premiership Rugby and funded by partners, Land Rover, Comic Relief and Wooden Spoon, HITZ uses rugby to increase young people’s resilience, self-reliance and confidence.
It gives them the skills to get back into education, vocational training, apprenticeships and employment. HITZ gives those with no hope new hope.HITZ sessions are 50/50 practical and theory. Our education providers SCL will give you the required skills and knowledge to complete a Sports and Active Leisure level 1 Diploma (SAL), improve your Maths and English Functional Skills, and provide you with key employability skills.
Working with local businesses we will look to get you work experience, and help you gain vital employment skills by practising real life interviews. With the help of the Bath Rugby Foundation we can also provide you with a range of volunteering opportunities.
We’ll be recruiting for a new cohort starting in September, so if you or someone you know is perfect for HITZ and looking for a new start, please get in touch with Employability Officer, Paul Short by emailing Paul.Short@bathrugby.com or calling him on 07464545296.
Our success stories
Jake came through to us having been referred by a Youth Service in January 2017. In his own words, “I dropped out of sixth form when my family were going through difficult issues and I lost all focus. I also lost all interest to learn and socialise with people from school. I fell out with members of my family and became an introvert. Since being on HITZ over the past 7 months I now feel I have come back out of my shell completely. I enjoy attending HITZ everyday and seeing my close friends on the course. My confidence and self belief has ROCKETED”.
Jake is now a massive character in the group and a natural leader that all members respect and look up to. He shows commitment to the course traveling over 1.5 hrs each morning and night just to get to HITZ and back. He is always the first to volunteer and ask to help lead activities at other clubs run by Bath Rugby Foundation. He is super keen to getting into coaching and therefore tries to get as many coaching experiences as possible. He has helped take a leading role at school tag rugby festivals and inclusive days working with children with disabilities.
Following on from our Employability day he has multiple avenues to now explore with many businesses asking for follow up interviews with him as they wish to make him a part of their team. He has completed his Maths Functional Skills qualification with us, equivalent to a GCSE C, and he has also achieved a Sports Qualification. He has returned to playing rugby for a local team in Bristol as he feels he has the resilience to play sport again.
Josh came onto Hitz in September 2016. He was low in confidence, suffered from body confidence issues and had been bullied through most of school. This affected his qualifications and Josh didn’t achieve his English GCSE. His aim was to try and rebuild his soft skills and gain his qualifications so he could progress into sports coaching since he has a real passion for netball.
Josh said, “Before I came to HITZ I was quite a shy person and was bullied a lot throughout both primary and secondary school. After that I did relatively badly on my exams. I looked for different jobs but found out about HITZ instead. After joining HITZ I have become a lot more confident and have made some great friends. I have met people who are not only motivating but also passionate. The project and issue based topics we discuss has given me the confidence to tell people about my sexuality and be open that I am bisexual. I have been so supported by my peers and now have people I can talk to for example my amazing tutors”.
Our Employability Officer Paul said, “Josh is a fantastic character that needed support and guidance to reach his potential which HITZ has provided. Throughout his time with us he has not only achieved his level 1 English in reading and writing but has shown the resilience, and determination to go on and also achieve his level 2. Moving up two levels within a short period is a phenomenal achievement. Alongside this he has complete his sports qualification which puts him in a good position to go on and complete further netball/coaching qualifications or even an apprenticeship”.
Josh now has an interview for Coachmakers which is a sports coaching apprenticeship service. He also completed a two week work experience for Running High. This work experience saw Josh help a small crew build the athlete’s village and course for the Bath Half marathon. Rhiannon who led the work placement and organised the event said “Josh was fantastic. He showed great leadership. He was always on time, organised and so reliable. He was always happy and smiling. We would love to hire Josh next year as a paid member of the crew”.
Jordan Wickens came to HITZ in September 2015. He had been on a number of Bath Rugby Foundation courses in the past, finding it hard to achieve the grades he needed in a traditional classroom setting. Jordan was very quiet. He had low confidence and struggled to see where he might go in the future.
Jordan said, ‘Before HITZ I was quiet. I had to go to a special school because of my dyslexia and I found work hard. HITZ gave me a fresh start and I finally found something I enjoyed in sport and coaching. The best thing for me was meeting the coaches but also the other students. You feel part of a team and that’s great. I have so much more confidence now – meeting new people, talking to colleagues and friends. All of that is thanks to HITZ.’
Jordan gave his all to HITZ. His attendance was top notch, he never missed a session. Alongside that, Jordan started volunteering as a coach at a number of Foundation programmes – in particular, working with children with special educational needs. Jordan did so well at this that he was selected out of many applicants to undertake Bath Rugby Foundation’s Apprenticeship in Rugby Coaching. He was also nominated as ‘Young Person of the Year’ at the Premiership Rugby Awards. Jordan is coming to the end of his apprenticeship and is now following his dream of becoming a personal trainer.