Testimonials

HRH The Earl of Wessex, KG, KCVO

"Over the past twelve years the Youth Charter has been one such agency that has worked with disaffected youth from disadvantaged communities in various Commonwealth countries using the vehicles of sport, culture and the arts to enthuse young people to engage in positive activities thereby promoting a positive attitude to life."

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The Late Gerald Grovesnor, 6th Duke of Westminster, KG, CB, CVO, OBE,TB,

Former President, Youth Charter

"The Youthwise programme was strongly endorsed by the Government at Old Trafford on 31st May, 1997. Furthermore I understand that at the “Building a Nation through Sport” conference, which was held in advance of the main Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in October there were numerous expressions of interest, reinforcing our belief in the worldwide demand to adopt the YCS philosophy, aims and objectives."

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The Late Dame Mary Glen Haig DBE

Life President*, Youth Charter

"The Youth Charter’s efforts from the youth cultural exchange of the UN Criminal Tribunal in the Hague visit, its lobbying at UN HQ in New York, its contribution and co-facilitation at UN hosted conferences and presentations of its work and programme delivery with ILO, UNESCO, UNICEF and UN Aid."

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Sir Donald Charles McKinnon ONZ GCVO

Former Secretar-General, Commonwealth Secretariat

"The Commonwealth Secretariat first became aware of the work of the Youth Charter in 1997. A part of Manchester’s bid to win the 2002 Commonwealth Games was a ground-breaking five-year report ‘The Youth Charter for Sport as a Contributor to Social Regeneration’."

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Lord Sebastian Coe

IOC Member and IAAF President

“I am here today to support the Youth Charter’s 26 years of work and proposals to provide young people, especially those caught up through the lack of sporting, artistic and cultural activity, in the negative lifestyle choices that lead to drugs, violence, gang-related activity and, in some cases, extremism. The most powerful social worker is sport. We know that sport organisations create an anchor in young people and offer many more opportunities. I salute the Youth Charter.”

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Sir Philip Craven MBE

IOC Member, Former IPC Chair

The Youth Charter was born out of a northern bidding and hosting aspiration of Olympic and Commonwealth dreams. The social issues surrounding young people and communities saw the Youth Charter, in its in- fancy come of age as part of the highly successful 2002 Commonwealth Games. The legacy of those games, the Youth Charter’s Citizenship in Action programme, saw ten communities in Britain and ten communities in the Commonwealth benefit from sporting, artistic and cultural programmes and projects that would contribute to the now well-established sport for development and peace movement.

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Anita DeFranz

IOC Vice President and LA84 Foundation President

“My heartfelt congratulations to you for your extraordinary stewardship of the Youth Charter for over twenty wonderful years. You have provided opportunities for young people to understand the world nearby and beyond the geographic borders of our nations. These young people now see the world of possibilities that await when an opportunity to achieve is offered. I am proud to have been there at the start!”

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Dr Sam Ramsamy

Honorary IOC Member, and Vice President, FINA

“I have had the unique perspective to witness the work of the Youth Charter within its birth, development and coming of age. I was to witness the Youth Charters’ growth and impact in the UK and in South Africa. One of the highlights of the man. Youth Charter programme initiatives was the Spirit of the Streets Tour of South Africa, which followed Manchester’s highly successful 2002 Commonwealth Games. I had the privilege of hosting the Tour Group with fellow IOC Honorary Member, Dame Mary Glen Haig and witness the development and growth of young people who had been exposed to travel and the social and cultural diversity of the new South Africa.”

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Agnes Tjonagre

Minister of Sport, Youth and National Service, Namibia and President of the Namibian National Olympic Committee (NNOC)

“I came to know the Youth Charter through my colleague, Mr Piet du Plooy. It is the best thing that can happen in any Country taking into account the problems our Youth is facing nowadays. We together with the Sport Commission took the Youth Charter very seriously and we approached the Ministry of Youth, National service, Sport and Culture to incorporate it into their programmes. I hope that the Youth Charter can be expanded to as many Countries as possible.”

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Lord Herman Ouseley

Chair of Kick it Out and Youth Charter Vice President

“As a Vice President of the Youth Charter, I have been encouraged by the innovative work undertaken by the agency in the area of social and human development through cultural activity over the past 21 years… I was the Chair of the Commission for Racial Equality and had the privilege to witness, at first hand, the Moss Side Amateur Reserves and the early steps in an incredible Youth Charter journey.”

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Dame Sarah Storey DBE

UK’s most successful Paralympian

“I first became involved with Youth Charter as a teenager because I felt passionately that everyone should have a chance in sport like I had, regardless of their background. The charity has gone global, using sport as a bridge to bring even the most socially-challenged youngsters back onto a positive path.”

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Sepp Blatter

Former FIFA President

“Campaigning for and promoting the role of sport as a way of integrating and development young people socially for life is not an easy task. The Youth Charter organisation has been working on this very important undertaking since 1993 and I congratulate you on your work. The power of sport is far more than symbolic, and we experience this in football every day. I am happy to see that you have projects all over the world including joint action with football associations.”

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Allison Burchell

International Sports Administrator and Consultant

“Having known and worked with the Youth Charter since 1995, I have come to admire the work it has done as well as its ability to persevere and to adapt. Following on from the Manchester bid for the 2002 Commonwealth Games and linking into the Cape Town 2004 Olympic Bid and the 1995 Vision for Sport Conference held in South Africa, a long-standing relationship has been developed to address the increasing need to engage our youth in their communities through the use of sport, arts and culture with digital technology being added in recent years.”

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Sue Redmond

British Airways Communications Manager, North of England

“We achieved a very high level of Press coverage and from a public relations perspective we were delighted with our association with the YCS. Perhaps the highlight of our partnership was the Manchester Olympic Bid in Monaco, followed by the successful Manchester 2002 Commonwealth Games Bid in Bermuda.”

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Sir Rodney Walker

Former Chair of Sports England and former Chair of Sport UK

“As my term as Chair of Sports England, came to an end; and became new Chair of Sport UK, I continued to keep a distant, but nevertheless watchful eye and interest in the ongoing work of the Charter. During the 1997 CHOGM meeting, I had the pleasure of hosting the Commonwealth Sports Ministers, and the Youth Charter addressed the Sports Ministers’ Conference, titled ‘Building a nation through sport’. This is one of the highlights of the Agency’s potent ability to engage and bring issues of youth, sports and development to the attention of the Ministers and other people in attendance.”

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Marlene Amoo

Sport England, BME Regional Development & Training Manager (NW)

“Sport can bring many advantages to our society and, as a governing body, the RFU has been striving, with the help of the Youth Charter, to ensure that everyone can enjoy these benefits. We are intent on widening the opportunities for playing rugby in all its facets, from tag rugby to the very top of the game, covering inner cities to rural communities and a complete cross section of our population. In this document we have detailed some of the RFU’s social inclusion initiatives which have been supported by the Youth Charter. Our sport can be a vehicle for social change, it can improve school attendance, community safety and the health and well-being of our young people. ‘Rugbywise’ will give an insight into some of the results being achieved.”

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Brigadier Noel Nagel

Former chair of the Sports Aid Foundation

“As chair of the Sports Aid Foundation I have worked with the Youth Charter and witnessed how they are always will doing to do more for others, even at the sacrifice for themselves.”

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Tim Henman

Former British No.1

“I first became aware of Youth Charter whilst still competing and realizing my potential as a world class professional player. In 1995 at the Manchester Open at the Northern Tennis Club, I was asked by the Founder and Executive Chair of the Youth Charter, Geoff Thompson, to meet a group of young people from Moss Side and Hulme. Upon meeting the group, I learned of their exploits as the ‘Spirit of Hulme and Moss Side Tour of Los Angeles Tour Group’ and how they wished to translate some of the lessons witnessed and experienced from the legacy of the 1984 Olympics, the Amateur Athletic Foundation.”

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Kenneth Gayle

Former Professional Footballer

"My brother Andrew and I began working with Geoff in 1993. I got in touch with him because I was worried about my brother... As a result of this comprehensive package of support Andrew, my brother, was able to secure a long and successful career in the sport he loved. He never quite made it into the professional ranks. But he enjoyed his time in the amateur game and is spoken of fondly by all who saw him play. He is now an experienced and qualified coach and the devoted father of four amazing and beautiful daughters. He has not been in trouble since getting involved with Youth Charter 25 years ago!"

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Donald E. Lassere

President and CEO, Muhammad Ali Centre

“Just as Officer Joe Martin helped to change the course of young Cassius Clay’s life, we have found that a strong Social Coach equipped with comprehensive resources and curricula materials based on Muhammad Ali’s 6 Core Principles can interrupt cycles of disaffection and hopelessness that lead to violence within our communities. The Muhammad Ali Center and Youth Charter are fortified in our resolve to grow the Float Like a Butterfly Social Coach Leadership Program and to expand the reach of Muhammad Ali’s legacy into communities globally.”

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Dr. Mordean Taylor Archer

Vice Provost for Diversity and International Affairs, University of Louisville

“This four-day tour took place in communities and institutions from across the UK, culminating in a major conference. Coordinated by the Youth Charter, young people from communities across North West England, supported by the British Council, welcomed the Muhammad Ali Scholars, a group of students from the Muhammad Ali Institute for Peace and Justice, at the University of Louisville, Kentucky.”

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Greg Fischer

Mayor of Louisville

"A powerful collaboration has formed among the Center, my city and the Youth Charter, with projects, programs, exchange trips, advocacy and campaigning. Ali’s core values of Confidence, Conviction, Dedication, Giving, Respect and Spirituality are reflected in the Float Like a Butterfly Social Coach Leadership Programme (FLAB SCLP), which now aims to engage, equip and empower young people from some of our world’s most disaffected, disadvantaged and disconnected communities."

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Stacy Bailey-Ndiaye

Executive Director, Muhammad Ali Institute, Louisville, Kentucky

“Youth Charter has been an invaluable partner of the Ali Institute since 2006. The international Learning Journey is an integral part of the Muhammed Ali Scholars Program, the Ali Institute’s signature initiative. Your hosting of our students in 2006 and 2010 in the U.K was impeccable.”

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Kumar Nawani

University Of Salford

“Well my experience on Muhammad Ali’s Tour was amazing. That tour was informative as well as eye-opener for me because there were some topics discussed about which I never heard in my life.”

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Barbara Sexton Smith

Louisville Councilwoman

“Your work through the Youth Charter is powerfully inspirational and easily put into action. If only everyone could have seen you engaging our youth in the streets of District 4. Young people in our poorest neighbourhood immediately connected to your vision and understood the role they could play. You are in the business of transforming lives through connectivity. Thank you!”

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Maryam I. Ahmed MPH

Assistant Director, Louisville Metro Government

“The Float Like A Butterfly Social Coach Program was a transformative experience. I learned that we are driven by our purpose and to remember that in my line of work. Grateful to have shared more about Ali’s legacy and its impact on me personally as well Louisville community members.”

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DeWanna Hadder

Community Outreach Specialist, Office for Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods, Office of Mayor Greg Fisher

“I really enjoyed the enthusiasm of Mr. Thompson’s presentation and the passion the trainers had for building community. I also appreciated the context around the work and addressing why intervention is so important.”

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Delquan Dorsey

Community Engagement and Supplier Diversity Coordinator, Jefferson County Public Schools

“I found the FLAB Social Coach Program to be highly informative. It was great to see how situations in the UK mirrored situations here in the states. I’m glad I got to share and engage with best practices that can be used here at home.”

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Jenny McGarry

Head Teacher, St Mary’s C.E. Primary School

"The Youth Charter has helped empower our pupils,
parents and staff by giving them confidence to have a voice and to
have impact on these necessary changes."

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Imani Modahl

Sport Coach, Dianne Modahl Foundation

“The event [Float Like a Butterfly Social Coach Leadership Programme] was an opportunity to reinforce and remind ourselves of some key values that will help to bring out the best as both individuals and a community. It was a real positive to be surrounded by such like-minded, yet diverse set of people. I went home feeling inspired and I hope to inspire the young people that I coach with some of the material we were given.”

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Likesha Higgins

attended YC FLAB SCLP Workshop Manchester

“The FLAB [Float Like a Butterfly Social Coach Leadership Programme] programme has been beautifully articulated and structured to incorporate the Powerful legacy of the late Muhammad Ali. It ties together the importance of dedication and mind set combined with other core principles that Ali, himself adopted throughout his fighting career.”

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Elsa King

Youth Charter Ambassador

“The Float Like a Butterfly Social Coach Leadership Programme [FLAB SCLP] workshop set the standard social coaches should uphold. This was achieved by sharing excerpts of the life of Muhammad Ali reminding us of the conviction, choices and important role we play in the life of youth."

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Louise Knottman

attended YC FLAB SCLP Workshop Manchester

“Having had the privilege of attending the Mohammed Ali Work Program [Float Like a Butterfly Social Coach Leadership Programme (FLAB SCLP)] we continued to bring the ‘Mohammed Ali’ philosophy into our professional and personal life. When supporting families within our work we now listen with different ears working together on problem solving rather than solving the problem, always looking to individual strengths within the home and local community to offer support and encouragement. Using the 6 core principals of Respect, Confidence , Conviction, Dedication, Spirituality and Giving to equip, empower and engage.”

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Jernice Easthope

Freelance Produce

“The Youth Charter has been an integral part in my earlier adult life, providing support and encouragement from both Jan and Geoff in times of encouragement, guidance and celebration. Youth Charter’s national reach and recognition has supported community and youth development in Liverpool providing a clear stepping-stone and pathways to different cities and career opportunities. I consider Youth Charter extended family, who provide direct lines of reachable, consistent and reliable connections, the unofficial mentoring has been a lifeline and opportunity that I will always be grateful for.”

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University of Roehampton

“The University’s partnership with Geoff Thompson and The Youth Charter is therefore borne out of a shared philosophy, an explicit commitment to tackling complex social issues and a shared desire to make a lasting difference. In 2008 Geoff Thompson received an honorary doctorate from Roehampton University, re-kindling the link that began fourteen years previously.”

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Dr Ian Pickup

Pro Vice Chancellor (Education & Experience) and COO at University of East London

“The Youth Charter has been at the forefront of work in the field of sport, social and human development for over fifteen years, providing an inspirational framework through which others have learned and become inspired.”

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Address

Youth Charter Dame Mary Glen Haig Office of

Sport for Development and Peace,

London Stadium Learning, London Stadium, 

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London, E20 2ST

United Kingdom

Telephone  

+44 (0) 7904 339 935

Email          

contact@youthcharter.org

UK Registered Charity        

Charitable Incorporated Organisation

1191785

United Nations Accredited  

Non Governmental Organisation

© 2021 Youth Charter

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Honorary Life President

The Late Dame Mary Glen Haig DBE*

Former Presidents

The Late Gerald Grosvenor, 6th Duke of Westminster KG, CB, CVO, OBE, TD

The Late Lord Terry Thomas CBE

Founder and Chair

Prof. Geoff Thompson MBE FRSA DL

*In Perpetuity

Vice Presidents

Sir Bobby Charlton CBE

Pearly Gates

Judge Goldstone

Sir Alex Ferguson CBE

Sir Clive Lloyd CBE

Judge Gabrielle Kirk McDonald

Lord Herman Ouseley

Sir Steve Redgrave CBE

Dame Sarah Storey DBE

Lemn Sissay MBE

Sir Rodney Walker

Frank Warren

Trustees

Elaine Banton

Mark Barratt

Alison Burchell

Juliet Donoghue

Nadine Dyer

Peter Ibsen

Phil McCauley

Prof. Geoff Thompson MBE FRSA DL

Chris Sayers

Ronnie Todd

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