Port Vale have have joined together with Werrington Prison to provide educational resources for the young people who are based there.
Three years ago a group of boys from Werrington Prison as part of their education worked for the Academy to help refurbish and put into use the second sports hall on Hamil Road which is now used by the Academy, Foundation and when required the first team squad.
In recognition of the prison’s support the Academy has put into place a number of initiatives in partnership with Werrington’s staff to provide education and aspirational activities for groups of the boys who are aged 14-18.
The Academy’s Head of Education, Chris Taylor, said: “We appreciate that these boys have committed serious crimes but many have come from deprived areas and disengaged families and anything we can do at Port Vale to prepare them for release shows that football has a part to play in their future lives.
“Virtually all of the boys follow a Premier League or Football League Club and the sport has the opportunity to put something back into society.”
So far the Academy has donated educational materials, football jigsaws which feature all the Premier and Football League Clubs, and at Christmas academy boys sent cards and the Vale Park Community Initiative provided a grant for the Academy to purchase 30 football related books for boys to read in their cells to keep an interest and help with literacy.
Future plans include Academy staff visiting the prison to run workshops, opportunities for selected boys to complete some work-based learning around the Academy building and for the Foundation to run some sports related activities.