What’s been going on with the Employability & Education within OITC?

The team received a £358,135 grant in February, from the National Lottery Community Fund to further develop their work across the community as part of the TACKLE programme for the next three years.

Since receiving the funding, the team have gone from strength to strength, expanding their network from working with 6 schools to 15 across the community with over 177 new students on board.

Schools from across Swansea, Neath, Port Talbot, Bridgend, and Powys have taken part in over 99 sessions since February with 832 attendances tallied up.

The employability and education team, work with those who are at risk of becoming, or who are NEET (Not in employment, education, or training) over three main programmes using the Ospreys brand and the power of sport, to engage with learners with the help of schools and colleges.

Since the new funding for the TACKLE schools programme, students have taken part in musical workshops like ‘Beats not Blades from Re-Wise learning, which uses producing music as a way of promoting anti-knife crime, as well as hearing insightful talks from and Ospreys Rugby nutritionist Matthew Thomas. They’ve also attended Avia autos in Bridgend, to learn about mechanics and the basics you need to know whilst maintaining a vehicle.


They’ve also tried out their physical skills at Bulldogs Boxing club as well as taking part in practical sessions with OITC staff to transfer the skills their using in the classroom into a practical setting.

The team have also worked with a special education needs group who worked with WRU National Inclusion Manager Darren Carew on a wheelchair rugby session where they learnt how to work as a team while communicating with each other to achieve their goal.

Schools on the programme also managed their own science technology engineering arts and music projects and digital wellbeing through a variety of different sessions.

As part of the programme, students were also treated to a behind the scenes tour of the Swansea.com Stadium and had the opportunity to put all the skills they’d learnt to the test at Breakout Live’s escape rooms.



Nick White, Education & Employability Coordinator from OITC said:

"Since the new funding has come through, things have started to massively ramp up within the TACKLE Schools program. We’ve now branched to 13 schools with two more to come, in September. We’ve also taken on two new members of staff – Kyle, who comes from an extensive education background and Tilly who was once a student on the programme and has grown and grown…and is now a full-time member of staff.

"Staff are now split geographically across the region in terms of local authorities with Melissa looking after Swansea, Tilly looking after Neath-Port Talbot and Kyle running things in Bridgend.

"The new funding has allowed us to evolve the TACKLE programme in terms of reaching more learners across the region but also has helped us  by creating an engaging digital workbook which has allowed us to better understand our participants, by tracking their data input and allowing us to taper the program to learners needs better than we ever have before."



As part of the programme, we try to use the skills we see in a sporting context day to day and transfer them into an employability and education remit. Those include communication, teamwork, leadership, creativity, how to motivate yourself, how to be organised and looking after your own wellbeing.

TACKLE is a collaborative approach to supporting young people, we will work closely with our partners, key stakeholders, private, public and third sector organisations to ensure we support as many people as possible.

We’re able to draw upon our commercial partner’s expertise including Philtronics, Neath Port Talbot College & Keytree, and offer our learners the opportunity to experience a wide range of industries. We’re able to take our learners on factory visits, have Q&As with a whole range of people in different roles and offer them the chance to gain on hands experience.


For more information on the project and to find out more about our Employability and Education Pillar, contact the team today, nick.white@ospreysrugby.com