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Rio Ferdinand Foundation, Delaine, 17

Established as a registered charity in 2012, the Rio Ferdinand Foundation works collaboratively with young people and communities to deliver progression pathways aimed at ensuring young people are socially mobile and empowered to be independent, take control of their lives and achieve their full potential.

Delaine Brown, 17, Brixton

I feel I have helped to boost positive perception’s of other young people, demonstrated by me being an active youth ambassador

Delaine first got involved with the Rio Ferdinand Foundation by attending our Free Football session in Ferndale, Brixton after hearing about it from friends.

Delaine had mentioned at the time in a general conversation to a member of staff, that he was looking for a week’s work placement from his Sixth form college. After discussions with him and the college, it was sorted that Delaine could do his work placement at the Rio Ferdinand Foundation

Delaine started working with the Rio Ferdinand Foundation at our offices in Southwark and on his time on the experience, he said:

Working at The Rio Ferdinand Foundation was a fantastic opportunity for myself. Although there are youth and football sessions, I learnt the other side of the Foundation which involved, administration work, designing flyers, thoughts on ways to outreach to the public and important information like safeguarding and health & safety regulations.

As well as supporting our staff at our weekly youth sessions, Delaine also experienced painting & decorating for the day in Sydenham to help develop his social action plan. Learning new skills and thoughts which will help him in current & later life.

Talking on what he has gained from taking part in social action, Delaine says:

I have enjoyed seeing my creative efforts come to life, to help others and myself at the same time. Because we young people have a lot of good to give in society, given the chance.

Delaine still regularly attends our sessions and we are in regular contact to mentor and support him during his education at College.

Speaking on how he feels about the volunteering programme from Rio Ferdinand Foundation and the development he feels he has made from it, Delaine states:

From my experience with the RFF staff team who identified my qualities and passion, it’s just about sharing and exposing potential young people to opportunities. Never second guess a young person’s character, we all have potential. Personally I have become more confident to meet new people, and take on new challenges presented to me outside my usual comfort zone.