Tottenham Hotspur Foundation hosted Sir Stuart Rose, Chairman of Marks & Spencer and Business in the Community (BITC) alongside a group of top UK business leaders to meet with young people and see what real ‘Work Inspiration' means.
The visit formed part of The Prince's Trust 'Seeing is Believing' programme run by BITC and took place during ‘National Visit our Schools and Colleges Week'. The delegates also visited Haggerston School (Hackney) and Haringey Sixth Form Centre.
Delegates included senior leaders from the business world: Marc Bolland - Chief Executive of Marks & Spencer, Adrian Ewer - Chief Executive of John Laing plc, Robert Higginson - Managing Director of Warburtons, Robin Pinchbeck - Group Director of Strategy and Corporate Development Petrofac Limited and Fiona Wilkinson - SVP Corporate Communications Visa Europe.
During the visit the delegates spoke directly with young people about their experiences of the world of work and how the Foundation has developed and strengthened their future job prospects. The Volunteer Tottenham Hotspur programme and the Work Experience programme run with Haringey Council Children and Young People's Services were key programmes that the delegates were keen to explore.
Sir Stuart Rose, Chairman of Marks & Spencer and BITC, said: "Inspiring and supporting talented young people to move seamlessly from education into their chosen professional careers is a responsibility that all businesses should share.
"We need to do all we can to secure the next generation of top class employable recruits - helping to equip them with the skills and confidence they need in today's ever competitive job market.
"That's why M&S is proud to be supporting BITC's work by leading today's ‘Seeing is Believing' visit. We hope that showcasing the positive impact that ‘Work Inspiration' has on both future recruits and businesses will encourage more employers to come on board."
Grant Cornwell MBE, Chief Executive Officer at Tottenham Hotspur Foundation said: "We are proud to be in partnership with Business in the Community to host Sir Stuart Rose and such an influential group of business leaders. I hope that the visit highlighted to the group the unique work of the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation and the impact it is having in our local community. I also hope that it showed that by providing a structured and targeted work experience programme we can support our young people to help them not only with their future job prospects but also to help raise their confidence and self-esteem."
By 2020 there will be 3 million fewer low skilled jobs in Britain than there are today, and over 40% of all jobs will require a graduate level qualification. It is under this context that Sir Stuart Rose himself launched the Work Inspiration campaign in September 2009, with the aim of bridging the gap between the classroom and the world of work.
Tottenham Hotspur Foundation is continuously developing opportunities for people to equip themselves for work, whether providing coaching opportunities, work experience placements or launching the new Applied Sport and Community Development degree run in conjunction with Middlesex University.
For more information on Work Inspiration visit www.workinspiration.com