In Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System, NHS providers of Children’s Mental health services have undertaken a service redesign, this began in 2018 and the final model is due for completion in April 2020. This work has been heavily influenced by Children and Young people from URPotential and Blackpool Youth Council have ensured that there has been great input from Blackpool Young people in the co-production and co-design of the work. The intention is to continue this active participation as we enter the implementation phase, Children and young people will form part of the alliance and monitor service development.
Integrated Emotional Health and Wellbeing Manager, Families Division, Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Just a quick email to say thanks for Saturday, what an amazing day.
None of it would have been possible without your hard work, dedication and time.
We really appreciate it and cannot thank you enough.
We really hope that you would be interesting in doing any other events we run in the near future, it was a great atmosphere and everyone who attended it loved it.
Good Morning All
I just wanted to let you all know what a fabulous event Sally and Louise organised today between URPotential. Clients and referral agencies.
I was absolutely blown away by the whole organisation which I’m sure you will all be proud of.
Both Louise and Sally managed their parts in the event extremely well and I also think that the rest of the team pitched in and came up with a brilliant event which I was very proud to be able to be associated with.
In fact I’d go so far as to say it was a stand out event I also had the opportunity to speak with some of the URPotential clients who attended and they were full of praise for the IAG they had been given as well as the kindness of all the staff. One client said that what he liked best was that no one “shoved you out after a couple of hours” and that everyone was happy to help with practical advice.
Thank you for encouraging this event to take place, I’m very, very proud.
Omega Marketing Training
I just wanted to say a massive thank you for your support with the recent visit to Blackpool by Geoff Howard, and his partner Sheree Chevalier. Firstly, thank you for your flexibility with the arrangements, which was extremely helpful, but most importantly thanks to you and your team for giving such a fantastic insight into your work. Both Geoff and Sheree were really impressed by what they learned and by what you and your team do and felt there was lots for them to take away and think about in the context of their locality and what they would like to achieve. In his most recent email Geoff had the following to say:
“UR Potential will stand out in my mind because of the enthusiasm and passion shown by the staff as well as Josh.”
I know Geoff would like to do some follow-up to his visit once he is back in Australia, I hope that will be OK.
From a personal point of view I would just like to say how much I enjoyed the visit too, it was really informative and provided lots of information and background that will help underpin the work that I do as part of the Opportunity Areas programme. I echo Geoff’s sentiments above about enthusiasm and passion. I hope there will be a chance to meet you again at some point in the future.
Social Mobility Delivery Team, Department for Education
This is an excellent monitoring assessment. All Evidence is well organised and was provided as specified on the Materials Request Form. Summary Sheets have been completed to a high standard with itemisation followed perfectly where required; clearly showing each outcome has been achieved.
Learner worksheets are well produced and show a good level of input from each learner. These are well flagged and show positive tutor comments throughout which is nice to see.
I would like to thank Deborah and the team for your continued hard work in delivering and submitting these claims! Well done!
Thank you for the most amazing day up in Blackpool for the LGBT Fest. Our young people really gained a hell of a lot of good stuff from your you guys and your young people!
I personally gained someone very inspiring ideas from your work and I hope to look and build a successful work between our two organisations to give our young people the best possible experiences and learning and you guys quite right social action is youth work and its important to always stand and believe in it, anyway thank you again and hope that we can link up very soon!
Your young people should be extremely proud brought a tear to my eye their contribution and one of our young people came out to their parents because of conversation they had with one of your young people!
Blackburn Youth Zone, Youth and community worker
You may not remember me but as a significant person in my recovery I really wanted to say hello.
I met you when I was on the prince’s trust a good 10+ years ago (my memory of dates isn’t great but it was a long time ago) when I came to millennium volunteers I had no idea what I was going to do beyond that point. I lived in the Ashley’s foundation hostel at that time and had been battling a drug addiction for what seemed like forever.
I am sure you have met and helped many people before and after me but during my time with millennium volunteers you offered me support, encouragement and faith. I went on to win volunteer of the year which at that point in my life gave me strength and hope to strive for more.
I still had struggles beyond my time at millennium volunteers but I managed, eventually to turn my life around. I am now the very proud mum to a seven year old little dude, I have a fantastic job beyond my wildest dreams, own my own home and car.
Thank you for being there for me, non-judgemental and supportive always.
Past Volunteer Email to Linda Markey
I work for Childrens Safeguarding services. Many of my families struggle daily with their life choices. Some have been lucky enough to be able to access URPotential via mine or a colleagues’s referral. URPotential have been able to offer unique solutions.
I particularly liked their approach and delivery of exciting programmes such as the graffiti project and the picnic in the park activity. A family I recently referred have been able to access these activities as whole family, and they have also attended family Peer Mentoring and First Aid training courses. The parent has been signed up as an adult volunteer and has been made to feel very welcome. The warmth and personalities of the staff made my families feel at ease.
Another parent I referred is now actively volunteering on another project at the local railway station.
To summarise the experience as a whole, I would like to highlight a parent who told me that “there was no way on earth” he was going to attend any groups or training ……… several weeks later he proudly showed me an award he received for his contribution and progression on a positive parenting course which was delivered by URPotential.
Childrens Safeguarding Services, August 2017
URPotential have provide a great service to Lytham St Annes High over the years and has a proven track record of engaging with students from all backgrounds. Recently they have worked with students in our Special Educational Needs department and disadvantaged students. Some of which have received awards for the best learners, which has allowed them to gain confidence in themselves that they may not receive at home. URPotential have reached out to so many students at Lytham St Annes High and we will continue to work with them to enable our students to have the best provisions available.
Careers & Educational Information, Advice & Guidance, July 2017
We have worked with URPotential for a number of years. URPotential have supported Refurb by delivering training to our staff and volunteers such as Customer service, Computer courses and employment skills.
URPotential have signed us up as a trusted organisation to send volunteers to. Advertised our volunteer opportunities, recruited new volunteers both young people & adults in admin & retail to support the work that we undertake.
The volunteers have been supported in training, nominated for awards & received certificates for training & volunteer hours.
As a charity we hope our professional relationship with URPotential will continue as their contribution supports our daily business and the community we work in.
Manager at Refurb Fleetwood, July 2017
Testimonials about LGBT worker Nina Beavers
My husband and I go monthly to the LGBT family support meeting at UR Potential. We have been going from the outset. Nina joined the support team approximately 2 years ago. She makes you feel very comfortable and is a very good listener. Since joining the group Nina has also further gained knowledge in respect what needs people have that come to the group. Without this group I’m not sure what frame of mind myself and my husband would have been in.
As the years have moved on more and more family members have joined the group to share experiences. Wherever possible Nina will find and share information with the group which is invaluable. Nina will gather information and give it to the group in paper form so that we can take it away and read it in the peace of our own homes. Nina arranges guest speakers to the monthly meetings which is also a great help when you are not sure for example what your rights might be. Nina is very inspirational and has a lot of empathy with the group.
Nina is always prepared, with box of tissues, which are always used. No one in the group feels embarrassed at showing their feelings and that is down to how well Nina presents the group. It’s like a home from home and that one meeting just makes you feel you are not alone. We are aware Nina does much more in the back ground that she does not own up to. Nina is an excellent support worker and so positive about everything. She’s is lovely.
Joan and David Rose
Family Support Group Members, May 2017
Nina is the perfect role model who cares and dedicates herself to what she believes in. I am so glad she is my teenager’s mentor.
Family Support Group Member, May 2017
I met Nina with some wonderful and diverse kids at Sparkle in 2016. She was so amazing with them in everyway filling their day with positive activities. I was actually on the train back from Manchester when I again bumped into Nina and the kids she was with, or should I say young adults and they had all had such an amazing time. To meet other people and especially the adults that showed them that there were great role models within the trans and the whole LGBT community and that they were not alone all with the total support of Nina. Also they had a lot of fun with plenty of pride colours freebies. The kids clearly respected and cherished her. And this was just one day in all the days Nina devotes to her vocation, She is an amazing role model herself for the LGBT community.
Trans parent-non group member, June 2017
URPotential are a fantastic asset to the young people of Blackpool. This organisation has moved the boundaries with its engagement, in particular with the LGB&T community. I have worked alongside the organisation for about 3 years now, and I am also a member of its trustee board and see from both sides what they have achieved. Some of the most vulnerable young people have issues around their gender identity or sexuality and URPotential have put a great deal of time in establishing support groups and links with other organisations such as the Police to support them and ensure their needs are addressed. I am truly proud to be a part of this organisation and support it in any way I can, through promotion to our staff across the Constabulary.
Ian Ashton, Community Cohesion Officer & LGB&T Staff Network Chair, Lancashire Constabulary
When they came to us…
A is 14 years old, and suffers from anxiety; they started to attend my group in May. A was quiet, shy and lacked confidence in himself. He identifies as Trans and has been targeted at school for this,
Working with them…
With support from group members and staff, A’s demeanour has improved dramatically in the past 4 months in particular around there confidence and self-esteem. there communication skills have improved and they have become more active and vocal in the group. They have been encouraged to be involved in activities within, and outside of the group, and has promoted our group with friends, and at school. They helped to plan activities for our stall at Pride and volunteered on the day, this was a huge milestone for A as it was in the public arena, and his first ever Pride.
A has said that they have had issues trusting people, yet within the safety of our group setting they have become very articulate at expressing their personal thoughts, feelings and views. During there time with us they have attended Sparkle in Manchester, 2 presentation evenings, and a Trans conference in Durham. Another milestone was when they represented the LGB&T young people at a Youth Summit held at the Town Hall, they spoke out about ‘inclusivity’ in schools and questioned panel members on various aspects of education and support in schools for LGB&T young people. This led to an invitation to attend a head teachers meeting, and having our groups advertised on public transport vehicles.
Their full potential…
A has accomplished so much already with us this past 7 months, but I still feel that the best is yet to come. They has played a huge part in 2 major projects – the making of a DVD, and the planning of our conference in February. For the latter they not only volunteered to support the event but also to sit on the panel during question time. Supporting A this year and watching them flourish has been an absolute pleasure, they has shared some dark times, and there have been tears.
Case Study from URP worker
Throughout our special needs students time accessing URPotential, they have not only gained skills in administrative tasks but have also been able to consolidate their learning from college in a different environment such as domestic tasks.
- The skills they have gained include:
- Improved self confidence
- Increased independence within interactions
- Travel skills (to and from work)
- Increased interpersonal skills.
One of students expressed a wish to continue this type of work and it therefore supported their application to the supported internship programme run by Blackpool Council. For other students the experience of URPotential has allowed them the independence to work in a supported environment which has been all round positive experience for all.
Laura Spencer, Lead Tutor, Beaumont College Blackpool
Educational Diversity is the Pupil Referral Unit for Blackpool and we educate over 300 children who do not attend mainstream school for a number of reasons. Some have been permanently excluded, some are medically unfit to attend a mainstream school and others are new to area.
We have utilised the services of UR potential in a number of areas.
We have used evening activities to promote socialisation and in many cases the opportunity to further extend their confidence – the babysitting course has been of particular interest.
Holiday activities have also been a vital part of supporting the students during their breaks.
One area in particular that we have utilised UR Potential in the past 18 months has been the training and development of Peer Mentors. The service has had a number of training sessions which have been held in a variety of locations: school, community establishments and UR potential offices. The courses have included the delivery of essential aspects and training relating to mentoring. Students have been welcomed back in centres where they have been able to support the ethos of our caring community.
Most recently, we had a bespoke ‘Young Carers Mentoring course’ which has provided additional support opportunities to our young carers and also assisted our organisation with achieving Young Carer in Schools Bronze Award.
The confidence and raising of self-esteem amongst our very vulnerable children has been well recognised and we see this course as one which would benefit all students with their personal and interpersonal skills awareness.
UR potential provides a valuable service to our organisation in particular since the demise of many youth support activities. We look forward to working closely with them and would hope that at sometime we could increase the opportunities they provide thus enabling our students to be confident, committed, caring and able to rise to the challenges that our society gives them.
Lesley Slack, Assistant Headteacher, Educational Diversity
Thank you. I had a wonderful evening and felt very proud to present so many prizes to young people who are working to achieve their hopes and dreams. I thought the whole evening was excellent and it was great to talk to some of the young people, staff and other guests.
Well done URPotential!
With very best wishes,
Julie Patel, President, SI Blackpool & district
Over the last 2-3 years I have found it really helpful and broaden my horizons in the world of LGB and T. Over the time there has been several guest speakers who have enlightened me and given me plenty of advice. It has given me a greater understanding of how the trans person feels and their needs whilst going through their trans journey. As parents our lives have been affected and we have had to learn and gathered coping mechanisms to help come to terms with our son’s transition to a woman. We benefit every month by coming to the parents LGB and T group and sharing with others our feelings, experiences and this in turn has helped us immensely.
I would first of all like to thank Linda Markey, because if it wasn’t for her the LGB&T parents group would have never been set up. Our daughter, introduced us to the group 2-3 years ago and we have never looked back. Although it Is only a small group, with fluctuations of people coming and going, we benefit from the chats each month. I personally would personally like to say a big thank you to Emma and Jane, who unfortunately have moved away, but what would I, as a mother have done without their very valued support. They opened mine and my husband’s eyes to a world we had never considered. How naïve we were. Of course this is a difficult journey and I have to admit I really thought I could deal with anything that came across my life’s path. Obviously not. I’m ashamed to admit it but I was not the supportive mum that I should’ve been. I blame myself for not seeing what was under my nose. I felt I had a very close relationship with my children, yet I did not see. Then to be told that my son wants to be a woman. I just couldn’t take it in. I was in denial I suppose. Here’s me talking about my feelings how must my, now daughter, have been feeling having locked this away from me, us, for all this time. People do say you have to grieve the loss of your son and then rejoice in having a daughter. Even after all this time I cannot get over this hurdle. I want to jump over it, but I can’t. I don’t want to let go yet. Is this selfishness? I do know I will have to jump at some point but I’m clinging on. On to what I can only try and answer myself.
It would be lovely to meet new faces and shares experiences. It does all help. So if anyone is out there who feels a little reserved to come. Don’t be shy. Don’t think there is only you having to go through this journey. There are others. There’s me and my husband. We do have a laugh as well. Well its better than crying, although we share that too.
Parents of a member of the Transgender Group who are also members of the Family Support Group
Testimonials from Blackpool Youth Voices Youth Summit in April 2016
Thank you for the invitation to be part of the panel last night.
Karen, Vicky, Bernadette and I felt very privileged to be involved,
It was fantastic to receive such constructive feedback from the youth and we look forward to partnership working going forward.
Jane Cole, Blackpool Transport
Well done to your team and supporters of Blackpool Youth Voice. I really enjoyed being part of the panel and was impressed with the type of questions asked. Please feel free all you to get in touch if you require any support with any initiatives across Blackpool.
Cllr Kirkland, Cabinet Member Third Sector Engagement and Development
Just need to say, Thank You!!! And your team for letting me take part in last nights event, it was fab and I cannot think of how it could have gone better. Well organised, well thought out, great turn out, amazing questions and debate……
Honestly I went home telling my cabbie, he started to get interested in what we had just done, then when I arrived home, my son and wife got the bug as I walked in absolutely buzzed by what I had just taken part of……
Jake you and the BYV team are inspirational and honestly now you have the momentum, run with it………
Great job and anything you need from me, my company or the Blackpool Provider Group, just let me know……..
Andrew Fairbrother, VLLancs
I just wanted to say a big thank you to you and your Team at Blackpool Youth Voice. You all did an amazing job and with such passion and enthusiasm. You should all be very proud of your achievements and fabulous to see over 50 people turn up for an evening event. This is why I Iove my job because it is all about young people and I went home last night on a high.
I hope you are able to gain new members and carry on working with this momentum that you have built up. It also goes without saying but if you need anything from the Princes Trust just give me a call.
Sue Littlefair, Project Manager Blackpool Princes Trust
A big thank you to you for facilitating such an effective workshop. The output is most helpful and will be looked at in detail at future internal operational groups with my colleagues Nick Medway, Claire Lewis, Julie Lonsdale, Mark Britton and at future infection prevention control meetings.
Tracy Riddick, Senior Integrated Governance Manager (Primary Care) CCG
Out and about is where it all began for me at UR Potential, I came to the group 2 years ago, a very shy and unsure teenager. I don’t think I spoke to anyone for the first three weeks. But over time members of the group helped me to come out of my shell and find my voice. Slowly building my confidence up and making me feel so welcome and like I belonged. Probably like a lot of you have experienced, being a bit outside of the box often isolates you and feels like you’re an outsider. I spent most of my young life trying to figure out how to fit in, constantly having to explain and justify my sexuality. But being at group, LGBT is celebrated and the best thing to be. I hope one day it feels like this wherever we are. I have learnt so much about myself and been inspired by all of you. Even when I have been having the worst week, coming to group has always cheered me up. Thankyou for all the amazing memories. Thankyou for such a special evening tonight and my beautiful card and flowers. But most of all thanks for all the laughs!! I am going to miss you all more than words can say, and this is the hardest goodbye, leaving the group will leave the biggest hole to fill. You are all beautiful human beings, inside and out. I am excited to see the group carry on it’s amazing journey. Good Luck to you all ❤”
Young Person From Out’N’About LGBT Group
Hi Rob. Want to say a massive thanks to you and your team for the fantastic time you have give Ethan over the past few weeks. Just to let you know he has a terrible time in school being autistic and ADHD. He gets picked on and the teachers who don’t understand him give him such a hard time. Resulting in him suffering from low self esteem and getting the point of not wanting to leave the house. So for you to have made him feel good about himself and provide him with some much needed confidence I couldn’t thank you enough. There isn’t many people like you in the world and you need to know how much its appreciated.
Parent of young person on bike project
I started as a volunteer IT Technician in order to gain experience in the field for me to obtain a career in IT. I came in on my first day and everyone welcomed me into the team, I have never met a more welcoming and inviting team in a working environment, everyone was happy and enthusiastic.
I settled in very quickly and became part of the team, going to meetings with other businesses that work with URP and making decisions with Ben about the website, to be given and trusted with important decisions about the websites was astounding. They gave me the chance to use your own judgement and guided me through my choices in order to give me an all-round experience in my role.
It wasn’t long before Linda and Debbie pulled me to one side and asked me to work for them and be a fully-fledged member of the team, which with a tight budget was an amazing offer of kindness and generosity. I accepted and not even a month later I had a job interview for an IT Support role, which I seriously doubt I would have gotten without the volunteering experience that UR Potential gave me. I received a glowing reference from the team at URP and all the support and encouragement I needed to secure my job. It’s not all about the qualifications you have you need that edge over everyone else which URP’s experience gave me, and if anyone asks me for advice on getting a job or starting out in a career or how to get into my field the first place I say they need to contact is URP.
URP is hands down one of the greatest places to volunteer as it is fun and not only that but they will give you the most valuable thing when looking for a job experience, I love URP and the staff. Like I said before they are amazing and the work they do with young people is second to none.
If I could have worked with them full time I would have in a heartbeat so all I can say really is thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me the tools to get into my field and start my career.
Joe Harrison, Volunteer/Staff Member
Groundwork commissioned U R Potential to conduct an independent evaluation of our St Helens Social Action Project which involved vulnerable and disengaged young people working on environmental social action projects. The project was funded by the Cabinet Office and the commissioning of a high quality independent evaluator was one of the key conditions of the funding. We were very impressed with U R Potential’s professionalism and the excellent standard of the work they carried out. Of particular note was their undoubted ability to successfully engage with a challenging client group to enable the production of a first class evaluation report for the project.
Mike Crowther of Groundwork Cheshire, Lancashire & Merseyside.
The interview panel training was a very enjoyable training session, allowing the participants to get involved rather than just watching a presentation. The activities throughout the training really allowed everyone the opportunity to share their thoughts and discuss them with the group.
A very valuable training experience that left our volunteers feeling confident about sitting on future interview panels for Diabetes UK.
Jessica Graham of Diabetes UK
Just wanted to say thank you so much for providing me the opportunity to work alongside everyone at URP I have loved doing it and has been a great experience for me, and in the short time that I have been here it has already opened up a new career path for me which I am eternally grateful for, really can’t thank you all enough, needless to say you have all been ace and thanks so much for everything
It’s awesome, all the young people I know who have been involved rave about you!!
Dee-Marie Talbott of the Carers Trust Fylde Coast
Inspirational, person-centered services. A pleasure to work with!!
Travis Peters of LBGT Lancs
Our partnership with UR Potential has been rewarding. Working with a varied group of individuals has not only seen great results but has also given coaches/instructors invaluable experience.
Ian Brookes of the Fylde Council
Great opportunities for all. Training is excellent for both volunteers and young people.
Lynda Kendall of NYAS
Excellent Service, long may it continue
Cath Powell of PV4U
I think the service that you provide is wonderful & you have achieved so much in the last 5 years.
Angela of CBS
The best thing I like about being in LGBT group (Out n About) is that it distracts my mind away from reality, I meet new people that
I can relate to. The group is so active with programs and events that everyone can get involved in. Being a part of this group It puts my self confidence up, feeling the acceptance within myself and having a conversation with confidence rather than being afraid of judgement.
They are all respectful and understand who you are, the instant you join you feel more at home.
Member of LGBT Group
The best thing about the group is the people, and the fact we work as a team.
It keeps my mind busy.
Socialising with people who understand what I have been through, so are empathetic and trustworthy.
Its the only human contact I have all week other than school. 🙂
Being able to make and talk to friends and people who understand. Being able to get involved in events and opportunities.
It’s great. I have a fantastic laugh with my groups members. It’s mint.
Member of LGBT Group
Well! What can i Say? UR Potential is the best thing since sliced bread and my family and I would like to say a humongous thank you to LGBT group and staff for their personal input, and of course you. Without UR Potentials help we would have been clueless as to what to do, where to go and who to see with regards to gender dysphoria. C looks forward to the group meetings, the interaction, the trips to workshops in Manchester and the weekend away which has been arranged.
You and the group welcomed C with a smile, and knowingness that she wasn’t alone. C is now much more comfortable with herself and has found a new confidence which we never saw before, which in its self deserves merit.
Without groups like yours parents and their families would be without knowledge and insight on how to embrace the situation, but your personal touch and understanding makes people feel at ease and the want to learn and gain knowledge about all that you do within the group. I personally would like to see UR Potential carry on helping people in all situations who are in need of direction.
Thank you once again for all your help and carry on the good work!
Parent of person in LGBT Group
I just wanted to say a big thank you for allowing me to attend the ‘New Year, New You’ course. I found it very interesting and a good confidence builder. I was able to use some of the ‘communication skills discussion’ in interviews that I have been attending and it obviously helped.
The colours and what the best colours are for you, dependent on your skin tone (my skin tone is warm) and what clothes suit different people, was also very interesting, plus what to wear and what not to wear for interviews. Hopefully I will save money now by not buying colours that don’t suit me! I also found out that I am not a ‘patterns’ person, but rather preferring plain colours. I can see the charity shop doing well!!
My confidence and self-esteem has suffered for years, without going into detail, my younger years were not good at all and I suffered various forms of abuse. So when things go wrong my confidence and self-esteem, take a nose dive unfortunately. So it was very kind of you both, thank you. I would definitely recommend this course for anyone wanting to take back control of their lives, a definite tick in the box.
Learner on Women only personal development course
This was an excellent monitoring with Deborah Terras, the co-ordinator setting high standards in all aspect of this assessment. Student evidence was clearly flagged and well presented and documentation was prepared to a high standard. The centre uses the UAS with great success offering a range of units to meet the needs of the students. It is clear that the internal systems of monitoring are in place and are effective. I would like to thank Debra and her colleagues for their outstanding work in preparing this assessment. My thanks also go to the centre staff involved in teaching these units.
AQA Unit Awards Scheme
I started volunteering at Ur Potential doing the Peer mentoring training. I had heard of peer mentoring at school and thought that as a young person, it was something I could do to help others. I knew I wanted to do some kind of volunteering, but I wasn’t sure what was available to me, or if I had the right qualifications.
With additional training and help from the workers at Ur Potential, I gradually gained the confidence. During the course, we learnt what is expected of a peer mentor, how to conduct a session and worked on team building activities.
We peer mentor all the time as friends but I think this specific role is important because some people do not have anybody they can turn to. Just having someone close to your own age feels more comfortable. Talking with someone close to your own age helps break down the barriers and miscommunications that you may face with someone who does not know as much about youth culture.
In my own personal experience, I started mentoring a boy close to my own age with learning difficulties. He has trouble communicating verbally and needs additional support. We do tasks around the office to help him gain experience and I am there to help him do these tasks instead of his usual adult support worker. I have also gained lots of new skills and it has been a very positive learning curve for me. I had not worked with anyone with learning disabilities before and so I learn from his actions and he is teaching me things all the time.
From my time as a peer mentor I have decided that I would like a career in therapy and am applying to universities this year.
Peer Mentor for UR Potential
I have been a peer mentor for 4 months, and in that time I have seen my mentee progress and grow. When I first started working with my mentee they was quite shy, but within these last 4 months I have seen their confidence grow.
When I first got paired with my mentee, we filled out the wheel of support, since then we have done it every other week, although some of the areas have gotten better over time, some of them have also deteriorated over time.
The targets we set out for my mentee are progressing well with although one or two need a little extra focus on.
Helping my mentee do something they enjoy doing is a rewarding feeling, as not only them, but myself are gaining experience in something new.
Peer Mentor for UR Potential
I just wanted to say thank you to you both for coming along yesterday evening and facilitating the volunteer workshop for us – we had lots of positive feedback from clubs who said they would definitely be signing up to UR Potential. After you’d left, the group agreed on another interactive session as part of the next meeting, so the majority of attendees enjoyed it and found it beneficial.
Hopefully you’ll receive enquiries and sign ups from clubs in the coming weeks, to help find placements for your volunteers. If you could keep us posted on whether any clubs do get in touch as it’s useful for us to know how many have taken up the offer.
Thanks again Linda, we really appreciate the work you put into organising the session.
Leisure Service Manager – Blackpool Council
I would just like to thank Joe Pih one of your Youth Workers who organised the 6 week basic bike maintenance course at Church Road Methodist “The Hub” in St, Annes and the Sponsored Bike Ride to Fairhaven Lake today. My son thoroughly enjoyed the course and attended every week with enthusiasm. He also enjoyed the sponsored bike ride today even though it poured with rain and he came home looking like a drowned rat! The bike maintenance course is the first thing he has ever started and completed. He found it extremely enjoyable, worthwhile and feels a great sense of achievement which is fantastic for my son. Joe mentioned he was hoping to run another course for GoKarts soon and I hope he can somehow get the funding to do this. I was horrified to hear that the Church Road venue is at risk of being closed down due to lack of funds! I really hope there is something that can be done to keep it open as there is no where else for these young adolescents to go as not everyone is into sport. I am very impressed with the enthusiasm and dedication shown by Joe Pih who is a credit to your organisation!
Parent of Young Person who did Bike Project
I feel compelled to write to you regarding the girls from UR Potential who provided such fantastic volunteer help at the International Women’s Day event on Saturday and were an absolute credit to all you do at UR Potential. The girls worked incredibly hard at the event throughout the whole day. Nothing was too much trouble for them and they approached every task asked of them professionally, without hesitation, and with a willingness and enthusiasm that was wonderful to see. I don’t know how we would have managed to run the event without them and they deserve to be very proud of themselves. Please will you pass on my personal thanks to them all? I hope I will have the pleasure to work with the UR Potential girls again; they were amazing! You are very welcome to use this email as a testimonial for any or all of the girls involved, if you wish
Wyre Council March 14
Just a quick note to say how valuable the recruitment training was that took place at n compass today.I am sure it was an invaluable insight for the core team and I am convinced that all appropriate people should undertake similar training once the ‘reshuffle’ is complete.I approach all training with what I consider to be an entirely healthy degree of scepticism, having endured some lousy training over 37 years in education. Today’s offering however, I considered to be high quality and so ‘well done’ to the person who selected the training company. They facilitated a useful forum for wide and at times quite profound discussion about the recruitment process and its pitfalls. Well done to all!
Chair of NCompass
Please could you pass it on to the powers that be that “Lynne” the trainer for the food safety training that we had at Sure Start Fleetwood last week was absolutely fantastic! Sometimes it can be a dry subject for volunteers, but her passion and enthusiasm for the subject area made it interesting.
Tracey McNamara Fleetwood Sure Start Oct 2013
The calibre and expertise of staff managing and delivering the programme was a particularly impressive feature of the mentoring scheme and UR Potential as an overall organisation. The high level of professional expertise and practical experience was consistently demonstrated throughout the assessment. All the staff are strongly committed to meeting the needs of their young people and developing a mentoring programme which relates specifically to their issues. The assessment highlighted a number of good/best practice features including staff management and development, volunteer selection and training, safeguarding (E-Safety) and monitoring techniques.
Achieving the requirements of the Approved Provider Standard demonstrates to funders and other stakeholders that this programme places an emphasis on providing a safe and effective peer mentoring service.
Mentoring and Befriending Approved Provider Assessment Report John Nicholls April 2013
I wanted to write you a note of thanks for the opportunity for the four Kickz participants who earned their FA Level One coaching qualifications through URPotential. The four young people who completed it will now be utilized at the Kickz sessions and can now earn themselves possible employment with the Blackpool FC Community Trust. So, once again, thanks very much for this opportunity Deborah.
Nick Cunliffe, Blackpool FC Kickz Co-ordinator Blackpool FC Community Trust May 2013
The Co-ordinator, Deborah Terras, has set high standards in all aspects of this assessment with all administrative procedures being followed correctly and documentation was prepared to a high standard.From the evidence presented, it is clear that students benefit from involvement in the UAS. Although checklists were the only evidence required for most of this monitoring, the Co-ordinator did include samples of student work. These proved to be of a very high standard.In particular, the work provided for unit 72284 was of an extremely high quality as was the DVD for unit LE4686 which reflected the diligence of the teaching staff and the high standards of work required of the students.I would like to thank Deborah Terras, the Co-ordinator, and her colleagues for their outstanding work in preparing these assessments.My thanks also go to the centre staff involved in teaching these units for their efforts.Once again, this centre has demonstrated a firm grasp of administrative procedures and seeks to use the UAS to the benefit of students.Well done to everyone concerned.
AQA ASSESSOR’S REPORT ON A POSTAL ASSESSMENT FOR A MONITORED CENTRE Jan 2013
To the Youth Action Team Thank you so much for raising funds for Aiming Higher. Really pleased that you presented the funds to the children at Mereside. Keep up the good work
Aiming Higher Project Blackpool Nov 2012
I would like to send this message to thank Ann for the support she gave me on the Fylde Employability Course.I took my presentation to Ann ready for my Job Interview the next day. She helped me simplify the presentation and gave me the confidence to walk in the room and present. I found her advice helpful, simple and supportive. I feel that Ann contributed to my success of obtaining the Job and for that I feel her service is extremely valuable.
Female Learner Fylde Employability Course Oct 2012
Just wanted to drop you a message to say thanks for all the work UR Potential have done with one of my service users at Fleetwood High. I spoke to Nina today and she told me about the activities they are getting him involved with over summer and beyond. We have seen a massive improvement in the boy since he got involved with the project and he is even making noises about doing this as a job when he leaves school. Thanks again for all the work and I’m doing my best to spread the word around my schools about your service.
Regards Andrew Bailey Wyre Early Intervention Support, Barnardos Blackpool and North Lancs Project July 2012
Thank you so much for all your support in helping me achieve the Level 2 Youth Work certificate.
Linda Baldwin, L2 Student ABC Youth Work Course June 2012
Thank you so much for all your help, i couldn’t have done it without you and all your help I’ve achieved so much because of you. I’ll never be able to thank you enough!
Jade Walmsley L2 Youth Work Student and Volunteer Drama Teacher July 2012
Thankyou so much for the last 9 months on the ABC youthwork course. I have now gained employment through the knowledge and skills which I developed through your course. It was hard work but it was very enjoyable and well worth it for the results!
ABC Level 2 Student Dec 2011
The Health and Safety course was refreshing and not at all like any other Health and Safety course I have been on before. Linda and Debbie were able to deliver the course in a way that made the information clear, interesting and fun! Really enjoyed it and would recommend anyone to do the Health and Safety course with UR Potential ‘
Health and Safety course Nov 2010
Debbie and Linda were fantastic trainers and really supported us in making our own tools and resources for our training. Really enjoyed the activities. Thank you so much!
Train the Trainer training course Young Carers February 2011
The course has given me so much more confidence I would never have done this course had it been a mixed class, thank you Linda for supporting me, I’ve got a part time volunteer position in a cafe and I love it….when will there be more employability courses? I want my Level 2!!
Women only Level 1 employability course June 2011
‘The peer mentoring course was fantastic, Vicky, Debbie and Hannah were brilliant trainers. I thought it might be like classes at school but it wasn’t! I loved the activities. I can’t wait to become a peer mentor for Fylde Coast Be Involved.’
Open awards Peer mentor training Aug 2011
‘Friendship Always Stays in Style
New Year New You the poster said
The timing was perfection
My career was at a crossroads, I couldn’t fine direction
My compass needle spinning, I decided to explore
Perhaps the hand of fortune was opening a door.
When further investigation revealed the course was free
I didn’t need persuading; I knew it was for me
I’d have access to a Gokess, Wow
I’d fallen into clover
I spent the whole night dreaming of how she’d make me over.
And so that’s how it all began, just seven short weeks ago
I can’t believe it’s over but I’ve learnt a lot you know,
I’ve learnt what colours suit me,
How to dress to be a hit,
And much to my embarrassment, that my bra’s don’t fit!
But the best part of it all, I can truly say
Are all the lovely friendships that I’ve made along the way.
So I’d like to take a moment before my poem’s done
To pay a little tribute to each and every one.
If we were to form a band, and that thought is quite nice,
Then I suppose that Lucie would be our ‘Sporty Spice’.
Her uniform’s a tracksuit, she’s a really lucky sod
‘Cos according to our measurements
She has the perfect bod!
Pink and David Bowie are her cup of tea
She can kick box, she can belly dance
And she’s completely off her tree!
Our songbird would be Jane, but I think she’s lost her way
She’d sell out as a stand – up comedian any day
Jane tells it how it is and though she’s um…petite
She has the biggest personality of anyone you’ll meet.
I have a special place for Chris, because she’s quite like me
She’s struggling to pinpoint just what she’s like to be
She gets a little scattered, finds it hard to choose
But if she sticks to arty things I don’t think she can lose
It seems her forte is design, she’s creative and she’s bright
But whatever Chris decides to do, I know she’ll do it right.
Lydia is our ‘Baby Spice’, she struggled at the start
It was hard to get her head round
Being stuck with seven old farts!
But now she’s got to know us, opened up, let herself go,
She fits in perfectly and I’d just like her to know,
Youngsters get bad press sometimes,
They can be misunderstood
But with more girls like our Lydia, the future’s looking good.
We have another Karen (and you can never have too many)
But this one’s short on confidence, in fact she hasn’t any
She won’t look in a mirror without lots of persuasion
Yet she has a hat to buy for an upcoming occasion
So Karen listen here my girls, you’re sexy….sexy I said
So celebrate your girl power, go out and knock ‘em dead!
Next comes Judy, just retired with time upon her hands
She’s classy, smart, intelligent, typically St.Anne’s
Yet she’s always for to t’kettle and she makes a lovely brew
She’s down to earth and genuine, a real lady through and through.
Janet’s the femme fatale among our number you could say
She’s always off with toy-boys after group every Tuesday
With lots of glitz and glamour and long blond locks a flowing
It’s hardly surprising the she gets the fellas going
We say we’re going to keep in touch but it’s a mystery to me
How Janet will find the energy and time, well we shall see!
And now our glorious leader, you didn’t think I’d leave you out
How could I petite Gokess, you’re what it’s all about
You’re our Henry Higgins, working hard against all odds
To make eight ‘My Fair Ladies’ out of fashion clueless clods
You deserve a medal, though I know you won’t agree
You do it ‘cos you love it, and that is plain to see
I’ll treasure all the memories you’ve given us so far
Like pegging back my jumper and yanking up my bra!
Draping us with silks of every shade and hue
And pointing out with tact and charm, which colours wouldn’t do
You’ve brought style and colour in more ways than you could know
To brighten up our Tuesdays for the last few weeks or so
So thank you Mrs Higgins, Gokess, Fashionista
Encore Style Guru!
Well done Mentor!
Hats off to you Sister!
Now homework done, project complete
I hope you liked my ditty
I’ve tried to show you how I care, in words both warm and witty
But just a final thought, it comes with love and tenderness
Thanks for sharing in my journey
Good luck, au revoir, God Bless xxx’
Female Adult Learner, Fylde New Year/New You Women only course 2013