Albion Goals

Albion Goals is our pioneering social inclusion project and aims to increase the self-esteem and wellbeing of vulnerable adults and improve the employability of long-term Job Centre claimants.

Albion Goals is helping hundreds of people across Sussex by providing free weekly football sessions alongside lifestyle and job skills workshops.

Participants are often referred to us by their Job Centre as the aim of Albion Goals is to help unemployed or vulnerable adults to improve not only their mental and physical wellbeing, but to also improve their job prospects.

The people who take part in Albion Goals benefit hugely from the regular football sessions, including many who were previously unable to do regular exercise. Some have historic alcohol or substance misuse issues while others either can’t afford to join local sports clubs or lack the confidence to turn up to sessions on their own.

Albion Goals uses the incentive of free football to help players fine-tune life skills that can be developed on the pitch but transferred successfully to every day life. Things like teamwork, discipline and time-keeping. Players also quickly find an important sense of belonging and learn to support each other on and off the pitch.

The other area of Albion Goals is what happens off the pitch. At various intervals throughout the year, Albion Goals holds a jobs club – a relaxed, informal session designed to help participants give themselves the best chance of getting into work.

These sessions include workshops that focus on communication skills, CV writing and interview techniques and the coaches mentors the players, helping them identify potential jobs or suitable qualifications to work towards.

Other sessions shift the focus to improving each player’s mental and physical wellbeing, providing healthy eating advice, supporting them to reduce or stop smoking and drinking, or helping them access local mental health services.

Participants are also offered one-to-one mentoring throughout the week via home visits, social media and careers events.

And it is an approach which is working. In the last 12 months around 500 people took part in the Albion Goals programme. Around 200 of those people ended up finding employment of some type while another 150 gained nationally-recognised qualifications.

For more information on Albion Goals, or to find your nearest session, email: albiongoals@albioninthecommunity.org.uk.