Professional Community Programme Award Winner

Derby County Community Trust- Logo ()

Derby County Community Trust works in partnership with Derby City Council to deliver a range of health-related programmes to increase physical activity and improve the health and wellbeing of the local community. They deliver three targeted programmes using the power of sport to get people active, manage weight and improve the health and wellbeing of substance users. Active Choices is a personalised prevention programme considering a person’s health status, lifestyle and personal preferences providing support in the recovery and community integration of people who use Class A drugs and those misusing alcohol. The programme also offers a customer centric intervention that builds on service users strengths, working in a multi-agency context to deliver joined up care packages, which meet the psycho-social needs of service users.

Derby County Pic 2 ()

People taking part in the programme are offered a range of interventions such as free gym memberships at Derby City Council leisure facilities, swimming, boxing, badminton and, of course, football. They also work to provide information on healthy eating on a budget; employment and education support; and encouraging participants to become a volunteer. The programme has been running for five years and has supported over 700 individuals misusing drugs and alcohol to get physically active. One hundred percent of people completing the 12-month programme have exited with sustained behaviour improvements and moved into employment, volunteering or an active supporters’ programme. 65% of our clients are successfully discharged being substance free. 60% of those clients who come to us as unemployed have moved into employment, education or volunteering work.


Lizzie’s story: “A year ago I wasn’t a nice person to be around but Active Choices has opened so many doors and now I’m a different person. Today I’m everything that I fantasised about being back then. How I wanted to be and portrayed myself to be.

UPDATE: Lizzie has now:

  • Passed her FA Level 1 coaching

  • Been employed by Derby County Community as a full-time Coach

  • Represented England at the Homeless World Cup in Chile

  • Attended the Houses of Parliament to give Government Ministers an insight to her story.

  • Has moved into the Children’s care sector (her dream job)

Joe’s Story: “I hurt my family and friends and pushed them away.  I was homeless and mentally unwell but couldn’t see a way out.  Deep down I knew I was a decent person and not meant for this life.

“With support from my Active Choices advisor I’ve not only kept clean but improved my health through eating better and doing more exercise.  I’ve got a new circle of friends and Adam has presented some fantastic opportunities for me to make more of my life.”

UPDATE: Joe has now:

  • Been drug free for 14 months

  • Lost a stone in weight and now has a healthy BMI

  • Offered a place in the Team England squad for an international tournament in Amsterdam

  • Is a qualified Voluntary Support Worker and volunteers at a rehabilitation project in Nottingham

  • Takes part in Livewell’s wider programme – badminton, walks, fruit and veg box scheme

  • Moved from supported housing to live independently

  • Aims to join the Amy Winehouse Foundation and do talks in school assemblies

Other good news includes Derby moving from the lower quartile in the country to the upper quartile for people not returning to Drug Treatment Services. The Trust also uses Derby County Football Club to improve the lives of the people in Derbyshire through participation in sport. In addition to Active Choices, they offer several other successful programmes that tackle and reduce inactivity levels. They focus on children and young people, as well the homeless and those at increased risk, and see this work as a preventive measure to manage the health risks of being inactive and substance abuse. Derby County Community Trust recently lost funding for Active Choices because of local authority austerity cost measures. But the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to fund the programme from reserves and Derby County Football Club has agreed to match-fund the programme because of the success the programme has had in the local community.

Derby County Pic 1 ()

Here are some stats that Derby County Community Trust have achieved over the past year:

  • 60 female players aged 9yrs to 16 yrs. in 6hrs activity per week at our female RTC
  • 12 PL Girls Football Satellites engaging 200 unique users
  • 1,000 children participating in afterschool clubs each week
  • 200 children within the Talent ID Programme
  • Over 300 children participating in weekend coaching sessions
  • 11,000 participants in school sport and physical activity SSP events
  • 1,000 young people participating in Celebration of Dance
  • 100 school sport competitions for primary and secondary schools
  • 75 physical activity festivals for primary schools
  • 30 Sport Specific Satellites countywide engaging 720 unique users, retaining 504 and sustaining 324
  • Increased the PA level of and reduce sedentary behaviour, of 650 adults aged 18+ resulting in 68210 throughputs with all engaged moving from nil physical activity to 1 X 30 per week
  • To increase the physical activity level of people at risk of or who are currently homeless with 300 people attending the programme; 70% retention, 100% increase physical activity and sports participation, 90 people to gain qualifications including, 90 people to gain volunteering opportunities within DCCT. (18 of these will progress with paid employment with DCCT)
  • Whole school approach programme in selected primary schools in the city to reduce sedentary behaviour and increase physical activity; 2000 children took part in the programme; 90% of children increase their physical literacy score of 15 or less, 70% school staff report an increase in confidence in delivering physical activity in the curriculum, 30% of eligible children referred into the child weight management programme
  • Increased the physical activity levels of 120 older people aged 60+ through a falls prevention/reduction programme

Simon Carnall Head of Community commented “Winning a Community Sport and Recreation Award means we are able to showcase the amazing work we have done at Derby County Football Club. It gives our programmes a huge amount of credibility and raises our profile, which allows us to share this success with our partners, participants and staff. We are grateful for the prize money and will use it to continue working with local people who need our support in getting active and improving their lives.”

DCFC- Professional Club ()