London Fire Brigade

Young Londoners awarded for achievements in LIFE

17 January 2011

Young people from across the capital have been recognised for their outstanding achievements while attending a firefighting skills course run by the London Fire Brigade.

The Local Intervention Fire Education (LIFE) programme is an intensive five day course that teaches young people between the ages of 13 and 17 firefighting skills alongside real firefighters. Since it started in 2002 it has put the lives of thousands of young Londoners on the right track by improving their motivation, self-esteem, confidence and team building skills.

At a special ceremony at the Brigade’s Southwark Training Centre on Saturday (15 January) around 60 young people were presented with a Jack Petchey Outstanding Achievement Award by London Fire Commissioner Ron Dobson and Chairman of London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority’s Community Safety Committee Cllr Susan Hall. Nine Leader Awards were also presented to Brigade staff and external partners that have made an outstanding contribution to the programme during the year.

Established in 1999, The Jack Petchey Foundation gives grants to programmes and projects that benefit young people aged 11-25 and has been one of the key supporters of the LIFE scheme over the last four years.

London Fire Commissioner Ron Dobson, said: “All these young people have made an outstanding contribution to their particular LIFE course and should be very proud of their achievements. The skills and sense of social responsibility they have learned will undoubtedly increase the range of opportunities available to them in the future.”

Cllr Susan Hall added: “Our LIFE course has a proven track record of making a positive difference to the lives of those young people who take part. All the award winners have proved to their trainers, parents, carers, teachers, and most importantly to themselves, that they have benefited from and made an outstanding contribution to the LIFE course they attended. They are a credit to themselves and their communities”

Young people from the following LIFE teams received awards: Bexley; Brent; Camden and Westminster, Dagenham, Islington, Lambeth and Southwark, Newham, Sutton, Merton and Kingston and Tower Hamlets.

Notes to editors

  • The LIFE programme is one of the most successful youth engagement programmes to have been run by the Brigade. The course started in 2002 and now operates from nine venues across London working with young people from 30 of the 33 London boroughs. Since it began in Tower Hamlets in 2002 the Brigade has run 486 LIFE courses to the benefit of around 5000 young people across London.
  • Following each LIFE course one young person is nominated to receive a Jack Petchey Award for their achievements and contribution. For every award it presents, the Charitable Trust makes a financial contribution to the LIFE scheme.
  • Established in 1999, The Jack Petchey Foundation gives grants to programmes and projects that benefit young people aged 11-25. The Foundation focuses on London and Essex and is eager to help young people take advantage of opportunities and play a full part in society. Since it has been established the Foundation has awarded grants totalling over £50million.