With football-fever gripping most of the country, Nottingham’s tram network has joined forces with a local organisation that’s using the sport to help tackle crime and build stronger, safer communities.
Aimed at helping ex-offenders stay out of prison, Step Out, Stay Out also offers young people an alternative to gang culture or petty crime by encouraging participation in grass roots football.
Ahead of a high-profile event in Clifton next month, NET has stepped in to sponsor a series of tram stop posters encouraging the community to support Jumpers4Goalposts, a four-hour extravaganza of football fun.
The free event on Wednesday, August 4, at Clifton Football Centre also features martial arts and other sports, as well as a variety of stands and stalls.
Representatives from the prison service, Nottinghamshire police, the Army and Nottingham City Council will also be showing their support during an afternoon of family fun organised by the Step Out, Stay Out team and led by the organisation’s founder Pete Bell.
A well-respected football coach, Pete’s own story demonstrates how football can help to transform lives. In the 1990s he found himself in trouble with the law and served a short prison sentence. Upon his release he trained to became a football coach.
His own experience inspired him to develop a project designed to give prison inmates a chance to develop coaching and mentoring skills, creating a motivational environment to help avoid the vicious circle of release and re-imprisonment.
Pete’s work with local communities, particularly in the Clifton area where he is based, is also playing its part in helping to prevent young people from turning to crime before they find themselves in the criminal justice system.
His pioneering work has now caught the attention of NET, which is also sponsoring a new gazebo for Pete’s project, which will be used at Jumpers4Goalposts and future events.
Operations Manager Trevor Stocker explained: “Pete is doing some fantastic work as part of a project that fits well with our own values, working in partnership to create stronger, safer communities.
“Now established as a Community Interest Company, Step Out, Stay Out is already transforming lives in Clifton, an area served by NET, and has the potential to be rolled out in other parts of the country. We’ll be supporting him all the way!”
The posters have been rolled at key locations on the Tram network has England march on at the Euros and Pete says the support from NET is proving invaluable in the lead up to Nottingham’s own festival of football.
“We’re delighted to have NET on board as we look forward to the Jumpers4Goalposts event. It promises to be a day to remember and provide the ideal opportunity to showcase the important role sport can play in bringing communities together,” he added.
The fun at Clifton Football Centre gets underway at 11am and runs until 3pm on August 4, and further information about the event and Step Out, Stay Out can be found at www.stepoutstayout.uk