Sports Management issue 133

Page 10


Participants were positively engaged by the project, gained the benefits of training and developed a strong link with an important local community facility TIM MILLS • BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR, FUSION


eisure centres are well known for providing health and wellbeing benefits through physical exercise

John Bunyan Sports Centre is

and a community atmosphere.

being refurbished with the

But now they can also help

help of volunteers aged 14-19

young people to improve their

vocational skills and employability. Fusion Lifestyle, through a partnership

with social enterprise Volunteer It Yourself (VIY), is refurbishing its local leisure

receive mentoring, learn trade and building

centres with help from young people aged

skills, gain qualifications and improve

14 to 19 years old who are mostly not in

their future employability,” says Tim Mills,

employment, education or training (NEET)

business development director at Fusion.

or who are at risk of becoming NEET. These participants of the VIY

“We were first introduced to VIY about 15 months ago. From our initial meeting

programme, supported by local

with Tim Reading, VIY director, we realised

Tim Mills says Fusion has completed

professional tradespeople, commit

that this was an ambitious organisation

12 projects with social enterprise

hundreds of hours to painting, decorating

with a great mission. The outcomes

Volunteer It Yourself over six months

and tiling the leisure centres, gaining

they’re striving to deliver complement

valuable work experience while working

Fusion’s charitable objectives and

towards achieving a City & Guild Entry

enable us to provide added value in the

Level 3 Employability Skills accreditation.

communities that we serve.” Fusion has completed projects with VIY at


Community benefits

12 different sites over the last six months,

“We’re always aiming to improve the

and Mills says many more are in the pipeline.

experience for our customers and it’s a

Around 150 young people have been involved,

bonus to be able to do that while also

with 75 per cent of them successfully

providing opportunities for young people to

achieving the City & Guilds accreditation.