Page 5: The Valued Youth Programme
This programme is set out to be inclusive. An inclusive programme looks to provide particularly for the social and economic needs of those who might otherwise find themselves excluded from the benefits of the modern society.
Social inclusiveness is one of the most important issues in GB today. Inclusiveness (or inclusivity) is concerned with trying to create opportunities for everyone, not just the privileged, to make the maximum possible contribution to the community. The Coca-Cola Valued Youth Programme has been running in the USA for 15 years and the Company has supported the GB arm since 1998.
Secondary school students who are considered to be at risk of dropping out are placed as tutors of primary school pupils, enabling older students to make a difference to the lives of younger ones. Experience has shown that this initiative raises the self-esteem and academic achievement of the student-tutors. The tutors work with a primary school teacher on a specially designed learning package which is flexible so as to best meet the needs of those involved.
The programme has a 7-point philosophy:
- All students can learn.
- The school values all students.
- All students can actively contribute to their own education and the education of others.
- All students, parents and teachers have the right to participate fully in creating and maintaining excellent schools.
- Excellence in schools contributes to individual and collective economic growth, stability and advancement.
- Commitment to educational excellence is performed by including students, parents and teachers in setting goals, making decisions, monitoring progress and evaluating outcomes.
- Students, parents and teachers must be provided with extensive, consistent support in ways that allow students to learn, teachers to teach, and parents to be involved.
Experience shows that Valued Youth participants are an inspiration to the children they tutor, positive leaders among their peers, motivated learners to their teachers, a source of pride to their parents and contributors to their communities. The programme has been piloted in 6 local authorities with the intention of launching it in 30 areas by the end of 2001.
Coca-Cola Great Britain also provides support for a number of other initiatives. For example, the Special Olympics UK - a body that seeks to improve the world through sport for people with a learning disability. The National Summer Games was held in Cardiff in 2001 and the World Games are to be held in Dublin in 2003.