Both myself Darren Darwent, Head of Education at Newcastle United FC Academy and Jo Zoppi, who is an Academy Tutor, have had the pleasure of sitting in on the Red Star Financial Workshops that have been delivered to our first-year scholars by Nick and Kristen.
These workshops are part of the ‘Player Care Programme’ here at the club and its intention is to provide guidance and awareness on a wide range of issues to help our young men become better and more responsible professional footballers and people in society. Nick and Kristen provide workshops to equip the lads with knowledge on money and financial matters.
All the teaching staff here at the Academy feel the Red Star programme has excellent. Nick and Kristen are excellent are communicating and arranging their visits and always have arrived on time and have presented themselves in a very professional manner. Our scholars have found them to be extremely approachable. The choice of topics they have covered are relevant to young men who are beginning to earn a wage.
Our scholars have given us very positive feedback on the workshops as they have learned a great deal on areas such as taxation, loans, managing incoming/outgoing etc. The length of the workshops is just about right and we would welcome an opportunity of getting Red Star Education in more permanently. I recommend them to you without reservation.
Head of Education, Darren Darwent
I feel that the finance programme provided by Red Star Education was first class. The staff are extremely knowledgeable about the subject area, that is clear but I feel just as important is the way this is communicated to the Scholars at the football club.
The information is presented in a very interactive way which means that the players who are 17 and 18 years of age find it interesting, enjoyable and informative. They learnt a great deal about a number of areas related to pensions, mortgages and general savings but did so in a fun and engaging way. I would recommend Red Star to any future institutions.
Greg Briggs, Academy Head of Education
West Bromwich Albion F.C has had the pleasure of welcoming Red Star Education into the club to work with a select group of individuals signed onto our scholarship programme.
The financial workshops that they have delivered have not only been educational, but have been engaging and as a result have made a genuine impact on the individuals at the club. Furthermore, both Kristen Durose and Nick Cunliffe were professional and more importantly passionate at all times, demonstrated through the work they have undertaken with individuals at the club, going above and beyond in the support they have offered. They developed excellent professional relationships with all individuals at the club, which allowed them to increase the effectiveness of the programme.
It would be a pleasure to welcome Red Star Education back to the club to work with more of our players and as a result I would recommend their services to other organisations looking for financial support.
Sports Performance Coach, Nick Wadsworth
We were asked by the Premier League to pilot a series of 5 sessions with Red Star Education to deliver topics on finance to our 1st year scholars at Sunderland Football Club.
The plan was to start with 2 sessions during the 2015/16 season and to complete the course with 3 sessions during the 2016/17 season. We have just completed the 3rd session with Red Star Education and are due to complete in November. The topics that have been covered so far include the following:
- 1. Personal Taxation
- 2. Purchasing a car including different types of payment options
- 3. Credit Cards, Payday Loans and Mortgages
All the sessions have been very engaging, informative and very learner centred. The scholars who have taken part have commented on how much they have enjoyed each session, in particular the interactive nature of various activities and the numerous quizzes that have been used to reinforce their understanding of each topic.
A few of the scholars commented they found the session on taxation very interesting as they ‘had no idea about the different rates of taxation and how much they would potentially be taxed further down the line’. They also found the session on payday loans and credit cards extremely interesting. Most of them commented how little they knew about credit cards and methods of repayment.
I have personally sat in each of the first three sessions and have been very impressed with the content, information given and the methods of delivery. Personal finance is a very important area and it is imperative that young players have a good grasp of a wide range of areas to enable them to make the best choices and decisions as they embark on what we hope is a successful football career.
As a result of the above I would have no hesitation in recommending Red Star Education to deliver topics on personal finance.
Head of Education and Welfare, DS Peattie
Nick approached us to offer the pilot session, right throughout this process, his professionalism was of the highest standard. As with most academy’s and football club’s the training schedule can be a hectic one and change at any given moment, however, Nick was flexible and accommodated the slight changes to the original plan.
During the session, it was clear from the very beginning that both Nick and Kristen were experienced in pitching their sessions to their audience. The players were engaged from the off, with the delivery, content and topics tailored to the needs of the audience, seeking their input on what the session should include. Normally, the players aren’t fully receptive to sessions of this nature, as their focus is on football and football alone. However, this wasn’t the case on this occasion, with this session now laying the foundations for future development sessions, their format, delivery style and the take home message. This ‘Anchor Point’ is imperative if these sessions are to have the necessary impact.
Overall, as direct result of the success of the session Nick and Kristen delivered, we now have a template to repeat the success achieved. I would highly recommend any club, at any level, to invite Red Star Education into their club and introduce them to players of any age group.
I have to say, out of all the development sessions we have provided for all our academy players, this one has been without doubt the best to date. The reasons for this from a development point of view is that the U23 players needed financially educating, as identified in a academy meeting. In addition, this is the most I have seen the U23 players engaged in such development a session. Everything delivered and discussed with the players was extremely relevant and fit for purpose for their age group, level of professionalism and reflective of their current financial position.
Lessons have been well planned, informative and entertaining. Students have been engaged and have offered only positive feedback.