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Want to be a 'Local Hero'?

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Local Hero project

The Sir Stanley Matthews Foundation ‘Local Hero’ programme has been created to allow you or your organisation to become local heroes.  The idea is simple - we work in partnership with sports clubs, community  organisations and individuals to create training programmes for young people, giving them the tools to succeed in life while transforming their local area for the better.  

Since 2018 we have been working alongside organisations such as the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation and the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation, as well as individuals like Micah Richards, to:

• Train over 200 young people to become sports coaches
• Facilitate over 4,000 hours of voluntary coaching at community level
• Provide free coaching sessions for over 20,000 children
• Offer our coaches an exciting and unique training opportunity plus a pathway to full-time employment

This is a programme that works and makes a huge impact for a very modest investment.  We want you to join us on our journey to change the face of sports coaching and community development across the U.K.  All of our projects are tailored for their specific location (and are also flexible in what they can offer). An investment of £25,000 will give 25 young people aged 16-25 years old the opportunity to take part in a world-class mentorship programme, gain nationally-recognised qualifications and help thousands of children in their own community.

What’s the problem - What’s the solution?

• Many children across the UK face challenges that block them fulfilling their potential. For instance, in areas of high social deprivation, youngsters can be exposed to harm, abuse, or

• Without strong role models and clear pathways for development, many young people never gain the discipline and motivation needed to succeed.  

• As a result of the above, those who are disadvantaged become stuck in a downward cycle:
a lack of jobs and opportunities leads to even fewer openings.
• The U.K. is also facing a childhood obesity crisis, with increasing levels of children overweight through a combination of poor diet and lack of exercise.
Without action these problems will only get worse.  However, you can help tackle these issues.  Our ‘Local Hero’ programme is designed to work on two levels:  

• it helps a generation of young people through the provision of high-quality training opportunities, real-world experience and mentorship in key areas to help them succeed in life.    

• it helps children get active, take part in fun sporting activities and eat healthily, along with their families.  

The programme focuses on the whole community, with each ’Local Hero’ intervention slightly different to the next. We tackle the issues that really matter to local people and provide community-led initiatives that are innovative and sustainable.

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Does It Actually Work?

Simply put, yes, it does work.  The results we have seen speak for themselves.  For example, our partnership with the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation alone has seen over 70 young people gain nationally recognised qualifications since 2018, with over 40% of course participants gaining paid employment either during the course or within 3 months of course completion  Five of those young people were so impressive and dedicated that they were employed directly by the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation itself, an opportunity which would have been non-existent without their participation in the programme.

The ‘Succeed with Stan’ Mentoring Programme

One of the areas where the programme excels is through youth mentorship.  We focus on seven different values, with each overseen by a world-class expert in their field.  Our experts guide our training process and help produce relevant and engaging material which, in turn, is delivered to the young people taking part in the ‘Local Hero’ programme.  Our leadership material, for example, is overseen by Major General (ret.) Paul Nanson who, until recently, was the Officer Commanding at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst where all officers in the British Army are trained.  Our other values are overseen by  equally prominent experts in their fields, giving the young people a unique opportunity to receive a first -class training experience which is unavailable elsewhere.

What Outcomes can I Expect to See?

A standard investment of £25,000 for a course focusing on football will typically produce the following outcomes:

• A minimum of 25 young people aged 16-25 years old will participate in the ‘Local Hero’ training programme.  During the programme they will gain qualifications through their national Football Association, as well as qualifications delivered by U.K. Coaching and Coerver Coaching.  The training programme will teach each young person the basics of football coaching, through to being able to plan, organise and confidently deliver a safe, fun and engaging football session.  

• Each young person will complete a minimum of 20 hours voluntary work with a local football organisation in a variety of settings, from coaching at grassroots level, working at disability sports projects, right through to having an opportunity to work with professional coaches and players.  This will also include providing free community football projects for local children, ranging from after-school clubs through to summer holiday clubs.  Each group of 25 coaches works, on average, with 5000 children during the duration of the programme.

• All young people on the programme will participate in the ‘Succeed with Stan’ mentorship course, receiving training and support to help them develop their coaching skills but also focusing on the soft skills required to help them succeed outside the context of sport.

• The programme can be built upon each year enabling a growing cohort of trained young people in a particular area who know how to succeed and how to teach others to do so as well.

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Local Hero Programme.jpg
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