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The Future Leaders Project launches in Derby

With the current uncertainty as who the country’s next leader and Prime Minister will be, the Future Leaders Project is a collaborative and innovative programme whereby 20 young people from Derby City embark on an eight-week training programme designed to provide participants with the leadership skills required to be successful in the future and inspired others too.

Hosted by Derby’s Opportunity Area (a DfE initiative) and partnering with local and global organisations such as YMCA, NewGen:BLM, Derby College, University of Derby and Empowered Youth, the programme teaches the participants vital leadership and mental health training skills while at the same time providing them with advice, guidance, and the self-belief to pursue aspirational careers.

“It is integral that we invest in the future leaders in our city and working in partnership with Empowered Youth & our city partners we have created an inclusive and safe learning environment that is offering opportunities for young people in our city to thrive which the Opportunity Area is pleased to support.”

Alix Manning-JonesLocal Programme Manager

Participants attend at least three workshops per week hosted at the various organisations’ facilities mentioned previously. Workshops include networking, personal branding, leadership, creativity, success habits, finances and plenty more. The participants will also earn a Level 2 Leadership qualification hosted by Derby College and a Mental Health First Aid training certificate under the guidance of the YMCA.

Through a vigorous application process, 20 participants were selected and then attended the programme launch event held at the University of Derby on June 28th which proved to be a fantastic evening of introductions and information. Workshops in the first week were facilitated by Dene Botha of Empowered Youth, where everyone was engaged and displayed nothing but excitement for the days to come.

“No matter where they are in the globe or how impaired they may be, the project has an ethos of “full inclusion” with one of the students being deaf and being provided with a BSL interpreter, one of them currently overseas on an internship and turning in everyday via Zoom, one of them being pregnant and expecting their first baby soon and even a group of four-sisters.”

Dene BothaCEO - Empowered Youth

Weeks 2, 3 and 4 will be the Leadership Training qualification hosted by Rochelle Lister at Derby College whereby the students need to complete 30 hours of training and several challenges.

Week 5 sees them at the YMCA Derbyshire for their Mental Health First Aid training course hosted by Julia Hodder before they get carted-off for a week of activities and adventure for week 6 as the programme takes them off to Kingswood Peak Venture for a three-day residential camp.

Week 7 finds the participants at the University of Derby learning about adding values to other people’s lives before week 8 where they turn their attention to the local community and get involved in projects at Derbion and Forrest City respectively before the final Awards Event taking place on 23rd August at Derby College.

“I used to struggle to describe who I am in few words as I believe I can’t be fit in a margin of a sentence. As I embarked on this project and had a chance to meet this diverse group of inspiring and passionate people in only a couple of weeks, I learned who I am. In one sentence, I am the future.”


The Future Leaders Project has captured the attention of social media and can be followed with the hashtag of #DerbyFutureLeaders

This is a Derby Opportunity Area Initiative.

For more information please contact: