On Wednesday 2nd December, The Community Trust hosted a visit from The Dame Kelly Holmes Trust who paid a visit to Gillingham FC training ground at Beechings Cross.

The group popped by Gillingham FC's training ground for a morning of football and sporting activities which was followed by information about CV writing and employability skills, a stadium tour and a visit from some of our first team players.

The Dame Kelly Holmes Trust supports athletes as they transition from sport, and use their unique skills to transform the lives of disadvantaged young people through different mentoring programmes. There are just fewer than one million young people not in employment, education or training in the UK. The Dame Kelly Holmes Trusts mentoring programmes run across the country by their team of world class athletes, which make real lasting changes to the lives of disadvantaged young people.

The group of 13 young people who were accompanied by Michelle Robinson, former Olympian & Melanie Tsangarides, the Sport Development Manager for Motiv8 Sports who deliver the programmes for the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust.

As the group arrived at the training ground, they were split into two groups and took part in a football coaching programme along with a fitness endurance session for the morning. The feedback received from the individuals was very positive with one individual saying ‘’I used to play football when I was younger, so being able to take part in this session with the rest of the group was a lot of fun’’

After the morning session at the training ground, the group made their way to Priestfield Stadium where lunch was provided in one of the hospitality suites. As the individuals enjoyed their lunch, they were given some information regarding the football club and the history of the stadium before receiving a full tour of all the facilities shortly after.

Upon the completion of the tour, the individuals then took part in a session of CV writing and reflection with one of our GFC community coaches. The session was an opportunity for the group to open up and discuss any barriers they feel they had in gaining employment, then with positive re-enforcement and some advice from staff, the group were able to plan steps in to how they could improve their current employment status. 

Both of the groups were fully engaged and were very receptive to the point that was trying to be put across to them, which was that the first steps start with them and until they make the first step in order to change then they will continue to have the same results.

Before the day ended first team players, John Egan, Rory Donnally and Emanuel Osedebe paid the group a visit to offer some words of encouragement and also to answer questions from the Gills supporters which was a real bonus for many.

We hope the Dame Kellly Holmes Trust enjoyed their day with us at Priestfield Stadium and we wish all involved the very best for the future.  


To find out more about the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust please click here.