An awards ceremony celebrating the fantastic work of young people hosted by Kirklees Council took place on the evening of Thursday 26 October at the John Smith’s Stadium.

The aim of the evening was to highlight the incredible achievements of care leavers in Kirklees.  As part of the event, which was attended by high profile guests including the Mayor of Kirklees, Cllr Cahal Burke, over 30 young people were awarded certificates and prizes for their personal successes in the last year.

Family and friends were also invited to the awards, which featured music and other involvement from young people themselves.

Special guests included top radio presenter Stephanie Hirst, Cllr Viv Kendrick (Kirklees Cabinet member for Children), Cllr Cahal Burke (Mayor of Kirklees), Steve Mawson (Chief Executive of Kirklees Council) and Tom Brailsford (Strategic Director of Children’s Services).

Also acknowledged on the night was Huddersfield Town Foundation’s partnership with Kirklees Council with its Care Leavers programme, which helps to support young people in achieving meaningful and sustained employment.

Through its delivery, the Foundation runs the ‘TURN OUT’ programme, which is for individuals aged between 18 and 25 years old who are not in full-time employment, education, and training by providing holistic in-depth support.

As part of the event, the Foundation highlighted some of the individuals who have progressed through the programme and now act as role models for others within the setting, shining a light on their learner journeys over the past twelve months.

Huddersfield Town First Team stars Pat Jones and Jacob Chapman visited the event, signing autographs, and posing for pictures before visiting tables across the venue to speak with those in attendance.

The Foundation is also proud to have further supported Kirklees Council and the Children in Care department by rewarding all participants who attended the event for the hard work displayed throughout the year by handing out 160 tickets for Huddersfield Town’s home match against Southampton, kindly donated by the Club.

These tickets were provided to participants, a friend, and their personal advisors, so that they can continue building significant relationships. For many, it may be their first experience of attending a football fixture and we hope some go on to become Town fans and back the Terriers!

None of this would be possible without the backing and funding given by the Premier League and the Professional Footballers’ Association, which will allow the Foundation to continue delivering the programme until August 2025.

The Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer Siobhan Atkinson commented:

“I’m delighted that Huddersfield Town Foundation and Huddersfield Town AFC can support these young people, who have overcome some testing circumstances in their life.

“We hope a small reward to attend and see a Huddersfield Town game at the John Smith’s Stadium, perhaps for the first time, will show them just how much as a Club and Foundation we care about our community and how we want to ensure everyone is welcome to come and join in with supporting the team.

“The Foundation is proud to deliver our own programme in partnership with Kirklees Council and we are indebted to the Premier League and the Professional Footballers’ Association for their funding. We’ve seen firsthand the impact we can have in inspiring, supporting and developing the skills of these young people to make their transition into adulthood a bit easier by equipping them with essential life skills they’ve not necessarily been fortunate to have developed or had passed onto them.

“We should be really proud of how these young people overcame their challenges and I’m honoured we’ve had the opportunity to work alongside them and learn from them too, as well as celebrating all their achievements.”

Cllr Kendrick – Kirklees Council Cabinet Member for Children commented:

“Young people across Kirklees are truly amazing and I was honoured to be part of this wonderful event marking their achievements.

“We do a huge amount of work to support children and young people who enter care. It’s vital they are given the right support and the right opportunities to thrive.

“They have often faced a lot of adversity and, like all children across Kirklees, they deserve the very best start in life.

“The Achieve Awards are all about inspirational people and inspirational deeds. We’re always incredibly proud to see children in care and care leavers fulfilling their potential, whatever that may be.”

The Foundation engages with these young people on a referral basis, so for more information, please email with an enquiry.