Established in 2004, SkillForce is a national education charity, leading the way in how character and resilience is taught and delivered in schools. Since its inception, SkillForce has helped tens of thousands of young people turn their lives around and, through doing so, realise their potential and become responsible citizens.
In addition to our commitment to young people, we also support ex-Forces personnel, providing training and opportunity to become qualified SkillForce Instructors. Over the years, this has proved to be mutually beneficial with former service men and women acting as outstanding role models, mentors and coaches for those in their care.
His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge KG KT became the charity’s Royal Patron in 2009. We greatly value our royal patronage for the recognition and endorsement it confers upon our work.
With continued support through grants, donations and, most important of all, partnerships, the SkillForce team, many of whom have served their country, look forward to continuing to serve their communities.
Our vision, mission and values are critical to who we are and what we achieve as a charity.
Daring young people to be their best selves:
Resilient, confident and ready for life’s challenges and opportunities.
Using the knowledge, skills and experience of predominantly ex-Service instructors, SkillForce will establish The Prince William Award as the recognised sector-leading character and resilience programme in partnership with schools.
SkillForce believes that a clear set of positive moral values is core to children and young people developing a strong and comfortable sense of self. The charity will also embrace our values of COURAGE, RESPECT and INTEGRITY, encouraging staff, partners and supporters to dare to be their best selves.
We didn’t believe it was appropriate for SkillForce to develop a new strategy in the CEO’s office or around the boardroom table.
We have listened to a wide range of our own stakeholders’ voices, supported by evidence-based research to ensure our refreshed vision, new strategic goals and the milestones for success were credible, aspirational and in line with our charitable objects.
Yet it is important to realise we live in in an ever-changing world, and the best programmes need to evolve to reflect that – particularly where money is tight, investment must be measurable and its impact tangible.
1. Leading The Way
Our aim is to be at the forefront of demonstrating the value of whole child education for UK children and young people, using an evidence-based approach.
- By raising the pro le of The PWA as an innovative programme and the only one of its kind for children aged 6-14 across the United Kingdom.
- By drawing on the passion and commitment of our Royal Patron to inspire a positive difference to the lives of young people – especially those most at risk of exclusion from society, social exclusion and those likely to be the least socially mobile.
- By making a significant contribution to the national debate on character and resilience education and promoting positive mental health in young people.
- By clearly articulating the links between The PWA programme and the current national curriculum and inspection frameworks for children’s wellbeing and the progress they make at school.
- By partnering with a range of organisations including government departments and the police service to ensure the sustainability of the programme and the promotion of the evidence to support whole- child education in schools.
- By providing schools and teachers (and funders) with data to show how The PWA is making a positive difference to achievement and progress.
2. Partnership For Success
To work in partnership with schools, ensuring improved outcomes in the well-being of children and young people
- By placing specially trained instructors in schools to work in partnership with class teachers and teaching assistants thus ensuring that the positive lessons learnt on The PWA permeate the rest of the curriculum and help to raise standards.
- Through the implementation of a specialist curriculum programme which has wellbeing at its core and promotes positive mental and physical health. This programme will need to be agile and adapt to the ever changing needs of children and young people and the educational landscape.
- By drawing upon best practice in character and resilience education to support high quality teaching and learning.
- By engaging with the FE sector to ensure that The PWA is a ‘fair access’ programme and universities support schools in their areas to bene t from the experience.
- By supporting the school’s own strategy to improve outcomes and narrow the gap in partnership with Head teachers and senior leaders.
3. Complementary Role Models
To harness the expertise, life-experience and character of ex-Service personnel, developing them with additional skills and qualifications
- By recruiting talented and experienced ex-Service men and women (veterans) to work with children and young people from age 6.
- By ensuring that SkillForce is a recognised, trusted and highly respected ‘destination’ for ex-Service veterans when they transition out.
- By engaging with the emergency services to complement our ex-Service veterans with high-calibre instructors with allied and complementary skills and experience that would benefit young people and the charity alike.
- Through high quality corporate induction and continuing professional development so that veterans are able to be successful in their work, enjoy a career with SkillForce and move on to future employment with a high degree of skills and experience.
- By involving ex-Service colleagues in the design and development of the PWA programme and associated activity.
- By providing opportunities for instructors to coach and mentor young people in responding to life’s challenges and opportunities drawing on service values.
A message from Sir Iain McMillan CBE, Chairman
SkillForce is a remarkable charity.
I am continually lost for words about the impact that our programme and instructors have. Hearing of children who were once elective mutes standing up presenting in front of their class, or young people achieving academic successes they had never thought possible, is the type of information that cannot be demonstrated in a document like this.
This is, however, the reality and power of our programmes.
To help as many young people as we have has taken the tremendous support of our Royal Patron, our staff, our benefactors, our supporters and our ambassadors and champions. Everyone has played their part, and for that I am tremendously grateful.
This collective support has already enabled us to launch The Prince William Award in 2017. This programme has allowed us to reshape the vision and reinvigorate our mission to encourage, enable and inspire children and young people.
Crucially, it also allows us to support and develop ex-Service veterans to be the very best version of themselves.
There is, however, clearly more that can be done. We live in a world where young people face many pressures and challenges, and I believe that we have a key role in ensuring that our young people dare to be their best selves and embrace life’s opportunities.
The work SkillForce does is incredibly valuable, and we should be ambitious in ensuring that as many children and ex-Service personnel as possible are bene tting from it.”
Sir Iain McMillan CBE, Chairman
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