LONDON, June 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
Then Meets the six Winning 'Special Youth Ambassadors'at The Roof Gardens in Kensington to Share Ideas of how They Will Help Raise Awareness of At-risk and Homeless Young People
Glee star and Virgin Unite ambassador Cory Monteith, today visited Foyer Centre in London to meet with young people being supported by the charity, which provides affordable and safe accommodation linked to employment, training opportunities and a range of other services.
Cory Monteith spent time touring the centre, which provides safe accommodation for young people, to see the facilities that range from a training room with computers to allow for job searches to literacy and numeracy lessons to a canteen that offers meals and cooking lessons. Joined by a small group of residents who shared their stories and hopes for the future, Cory said, "It was great to meet such an inspiring group of young people. I'm impressed at how positive the group is despite facing so many challenges. They're keen to move forward and gain the necessary skills needed to get their lives back on track."
Kereice, who has been living at the Foyer centre for 18 months, said "I knew I wanted to get involved with event management and volunteered to get the skills needed and now feel more confident and now have a part time post with the Haze Young people's centre. Cory's words of encouragement have given us all a massive boost. It's been a dream come true."
Cory then headed over to The Roof Gardens' Babylon Restaurant in Kensington, to join the six winning 'special youth ambassadors' chosen from the UK search launched by Virgin Unite and Cory at the beginning of June. Chosen for their inspirational essays about the importance of volunteering, they shared ideas of how they intend to raise awareness of youth homelessness, over three months for three fantastic charities - Albert Kennedy Trust, Depaul UK and the Foyer Federation. Cory also spent time with key workers from the three charities to discover what their needs and wants are from the winning ambassadors who as members of the public will raise awareness of what they learn from visiting the charities and spending time with the young people they support.
Special youth ambassador Zoe Chanas said, "Today has been amazing! Meeting Cory was beyond cool and I'm excited about using social media to let people know about the issues and how they can get involved."
Jean Oelwang, CEO, Virgin Unite, said, "We're extremely lucky to have such a dedicated ambassador in Cory. He is inspiring his thousands of fans to volunteer, whilst raising awareness of at-risk and homeless young people here in the UK. We are so grateful that Cory took the time to listen and learn from some wonderful young people in the UK and look forward to having him work with these six Youth Ambassadors to ensure that we never accept young people having to live on the streets."
Notes to Editor:
About Virgin Unite:
Virgin Unite is the non-profit foundation of the Virgin Group. We unite people to tackle tough social and environmental problems in an entrepreneurial way. Our aim is to help revolutionize the way business, governments and the social sector work together - driving business as a force for good. This is based on the belief that this is the only way we can tackle the scale and urgency of the challenges facing the world today. Virgin Unite's overheads are covered by Sir Richard Branson and the Virgin Group, meaning that 100% of additional donations received go direct to the frontline where they are needed most. For more information please visit http://www.virginunite.com. Follow us on Twitter http://www.twitter.com/virginunite. Join the movement on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Virgin-Unite
About The Albert Kennedy Trust:
The mission of AKT is to ensure that all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young people are able to live in accepting, supportive and caring homes, by providing a range of services to meet the individual needs of those who would otherwise be homeless or living in a hostile environment. They aim to do this by providing appropriate homes through supported lodgings, fostering and other specialist housing schemes, enabling young people to manage independent living successfully and improving attitudes within society towards lesbian, gay and bisexual young people. For more information please visit: http://www.akt.org.uk
About Depaul UK
Depaul UK is the largest youth homelessness charity in the UK. It provides and supports 145,000 bed-nights a year to homeless, disadvantaged and vulnerable young people and has helped more than 50,000 people since it was founded in 1989. Depaul UK also works to prevent young people from becoming homeless by rebuilding family relationships and providing young people with opportunities to fulfil their potential through education, community-based volunteering, training and employment.
Please see http://www.depauluk.org for more information
About The Foyer Federation:
The Foyer Federation helps to transform the circumstances of young people who have faced barriers in their lives. We work with young people to create new approaches to developing the skills and resources they need to thrive. Their campaigns and initiatives are led through a network of 140 accredited learning and accommodation centres known as 'Foyers'. These Foyers provide up to 10,000 16-25 year olds per year with mutually agreed, tailored-made programmes which give young people access to housing, learning, personal development, training and employment opportunities in line with their needs and goals. For more information please visit: http://www.foyer.net
Security on the day was provided free of charge by Nice and Secure, a professional, contemporary and comprehensive approach to security. http://www.niceandsecure.co.uk/
SOURCE Virgin Unite