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Newcastle United's forgotten striker helps unemployed fans get to work

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Newcastle United's forgotten striker helps unemployed fans get to work

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Published by Jon Land for 24dash.com in Housing

Newcastle United's forgotten striker helps unemployed fans get to work Newcastle United's forgotten striker helps unemployed fans get to work

Newcastle United's forgotten striker Xisco has been paying back some of his £50,000-a-week wages by helping the club's unemployed supporters to improve their chances of finding a job.

The Spanish forward, who has made just nine appearances for the Premier League side since signing for £5.7 million in 2008, has leant his support to the the United for Employment scheme run by Your Homes Newcastle (YHN) and the Newcastle United Foundation.

Twelve YHN tenants have just completed the scheme after taking part in three accredited courses, gaining qualifications, completing a fortnight of work experience and gaining a whole host of new skills.

A number of participants already had new jobs or training opportunities lined up with organisations such as H&M, the Post Office and Rolls Royce ahead of their course completion. All of the others are actively looking for new opportunities with the support of YHN and are hopeful they’ll find something soon.

United for Employment is a 10-week course delivered at the learning centre at St. James’ Park, which has been designed by YHN and the Newcastle United Foundation. Tenants have taken part in a range of tasks related to interview skills, public speaking, confidence building, team-working, IT and health and fitness.

They have also had the chance to gain three qualifications, in Sports Leadership, Business and First Aid and have completed a two week work placement specifically tailored to the area of work that they want to get into.

Placements have been organised in partnership with NUFC partners and sponsors, including Dickinson Dees, DWF and International House.

Xisco, pictured left, and fellow Newcastle United player Mehdi Abeid met the tenants and talked to them about reaching their goals, leading a healthy lifestyle and what they would be doing if they weren’t footballers.

Stuart Campbell, YHN’s employability manager, said: “United for Employment has been a fantastic course and a brilliant opportunity for tenants of all ages. For them to learn such useful skills at a club so close to their hearts has been a fantastic experience.

“With so much competition for every job at the minute it’s essential our tenants do everything they can to increase their chances of standing out from the crowd and finding work. This course has not only helped them to develop skills but has also provided them with invaluable work experience and the chance to impress employers.

“We’re confident that this course is making a real difference to the prospects of those who get involved and are thrilled some tenants have already been offered jobs. We look forward to having similar success when our next United for Employment course runs in January.”

Sam McLoughlin, Newcastle United Foundation’s enterprise and employability co-ordinator, said: "We have had a great ten weeks with the Your Homes Newcastle tenants. The group have developed their skills to ensure they are both mentally and physically prepared for the work place with some participants already gaining employment or moving onto training schemes.

“This project has proved to be a fantastic partnership, bringing Newcastle United Foundation and Your Homes Newcastle together and building a united future for the people of Newcastle."

Matvey Cherny, one of the United for Employment course participants, said: “I attend as many courses and meetings as I can through YHN as I am determined to be better equipped for work. United for Employment has helped me with this and introduced me to an organisation I’d love to work for via my placement. I really hope to find something soon and would advise other YHN tenants to take up this offer if they are keen to find a job”

United for Employment participants range in age from 18- 60, and places on the course were advertised in YHN housing offices, through Newcastle Futures and by letter to those who had expressed an interest in training.

Anyone who wishes to take part in the next United for Employment course should register their interest by calling 0191 278 3959, texting ‘Training United’ to 07814753088, or e-mailing getinvolved@yhn.org.uk. Interested tenants will be contacted in the New Year when details will be confirmed.

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