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Challenger Troop supports young people in the North West

October 26th 2012 was quite literally a “key” day for Challenger Troop’s newly formed Cheshire Team, with the North West Reserves Forces and Cadets Association formally handing over the keys to the TA Centre in Crown Gate, Runcorn that will be the headquarters for the North West region.

However, prior to this the team had not been idle, having already been out on the ground for a number of weeks, making important contacts in schools and communities, selling the benefits of what Challenger Troop can offer the young people of Cheshire.

This ground work, combined with the work done since the move in, is now starting to reap rewards. We have a growing number of both primary and secondary schools, as well as local councils, showing great interest and starting to commit to taster days and programmes.

Why are schools and councils interested in engaging with Challenger Troop in Cheshire?

Well, here are some of the responses we have had:

It is a different approach to what other providers offer.

These students will benefit from being taught outside of the classroom environment, that’s what Challenger Troop does, that’s why we are interested.

Our students need to be challenged, and the exciting, varied program you offer is exactly what they need.

We are aiming to make a positive, life-changing difference to the lives of as many vulnerable and disengaged young people as we can across the region, by helping each and every one of them to realise their potential, both as individuals and as young people who can positively contribute to society. The programmes that they will engage on with us will also improve the key skills required to improve their chances of employment or accessing further education.

Having spent the best part of 30 years working with young people as part of the Army Cadet Force, as well as spending the last 7 years teaching in a mainstream secondary school, I could see that education was failing to prepare many young people for the world after school. The emotional and psychological development required to overcome the issues and fears that they will face is being sidelined in the quest for higher academic achievement.

This is the reason I chose to get involved with Challenger Troop, as I knew from my experience with the cadets that the military ethos, combined with structured challenging training and the development of team working and leadership skills, develops the individual and improves life skills. As I see it, when the system gives up on a young person Challenger Troop does not. In many ways what we do could be that persons’ last best hope for a future.

I am proud to be a part of Challenger Troop and of the exciting times ahead.

Ian Holmes

For more information on Challenger Troop programmes in the North West, please ring 07532 150999


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Posted: 24, November, 2012
by Kevin Campbell

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"Outdoor learning is giving them back their childhood wonder and curiosity at new things, allowing them to experience the marvel of discovery and the learning that comes from taking risks"

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