New Career For Sam After CashBack Course

Fri 7th January 2022

Sam Harper attended the first 8 week CashBack for Communities Towards New Futures course run by the Rangers Charity Foundation finishing this time last year after a challenging period in his life. The course is aimed at giving 16-24 year olds with criminal convictions the tools and support they need to gain employment and move towards a more positive future. Sam credits it with helping him get his life back on track and has since embarked on a new career in the hospitality industry as an apprentice chef.

By his own admission, 22 year old Sam was not in a good place prior to starting on the course:

“I had just received a court order to complete community service. I was trying to get help taking back control of my future. I have been struggling with my mental health for a few years now and was finding it hard to motivate myself.”

Introduced to the course by his work coach at the Job Centre, Sam was initially attracted by the fact the course was based at Ibrox, however as he learned more, became excited by the qualifications and training opportunities offered, such as First Aid and First Aid for Mental Health.

“I also met so many great new people and felt like I developed a sense of responsibility as well as being motivated to attend the course each day. The staff and guests who came into the course were very supportive and helpful in helping me discover different ways to overcome the barriers I faced and how to plan for changes in my future.”

Like many others, Sam’s work search had become more difficult since receiving a criminal record, but through his work coach, he was informed of an apprenticeship chef programme. The Scotsman Hospitality group are an industry partner of the Rangers Charity Foundation and Laura Campbell often comes to speak to course candidates about opportunities in this sector. Sam thought it sounded like something he would enjoy and had potential to be a career rather than just a job. He was soon accepted on to the programme where he has been enjoying working in this sector of the hospitality industry.  

A key aspect of the CashBack for Communities Towards New Futures course is the aftercare offered to each candidate. Young people receive follow up support after they have finished the course to check in on progress and keep them informed of any suitable opportunities. Sam commented:

“The treatment I have received has been excellent. I have been notified of any positions and opportunities that have come up by Derek at Rangers Charity Foundation and have had consistent contact to make sure I am doing well during my journey finding employment. I feel that I have been well looked after.”



Since starting his new career, Sam is feeling much more optimistic about the future and is pleased to have a job which involves getting trained in a global profession and gaining industry certificates.  

“Furthermore, being back out in a new working environment has improved my mental health, as I have been learning new skills, meeting new people on top of earning a consistent wage which will allow me to plan for the future.”

Asked what his advice would be for someone in a similar situation, Sam said:

“The CashBack course is a great opportunity that teaches you essential real-life skills and helps you to discover the pathway to a career by helping you find solutions to your own barriers and a more positive direction. The wide range of contacts and help on offer is such a benefit as the staff can help you get into many different industries so that you find a career that excites you and not just a job you will dislike.”

The next course starts on 17th January 2022 at Ibrox and there are still places available.

If you are 16-24 with current or previous criminal convictions looking to make a fresh start, please contact derek.rhoddan@rangers.co.uk for more information.

Tags: cashback for communities / potential / employability