Following GCSE and A-Level results day, however young people fare, it’s important to keep those results in perspective and remember that there are a variety of routes to educational success.

One of these is the Future Pathways programme, run by the Cardiff City FC Foundation. The official bluebirds charity developed the programme to provide an alternative style of learning to mainstream education for those leaving secondary school. The programme supports young people through structured learning opportunities, career advice and mentoring to enable them to become work-ready or progress into further education.

The Foundation offers a range of courses including BTEC Level 1, 2 and 3 and Foundation Degree in Community Football and Development.

81% of Future Pathways students go on to further education, employment or training, and 89% report improved positive attitudes towards accessing education, employment and training opportunities in the future.

Here are the inspiring stories of two learners that chose to study on the Cardiff City FC Foundation’s Future Pathways programme. They both have bright futures ahead thanks to their hard work, dedication and the targeted support they have received. 

Find out more about our courses starting this September. 

Heavenly Bomba

Originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, 19-year-old Heavenly moved to Cardiff to be reunited with her mother who had relocated to the Welsh capital. 

Her move meant getting to grips with a new country, new people and an alien culture. 

Heavenly wanted to study medicine, however she couldn’t speak English at the time, which held her back from achieving her full potential. Heavenly enrolled on the Traineeship programme with the Foundation, focusing on improving her ability to communicate.  

The programme offers young people the opportunity to unlock their potential without the pressures of mainstream education, focussing on developing soft skills within a flexible environment.

Heavenly successfully completed the Traineeship programme and is now a full-time student on the Future Pathways project. She is on course to progress to the second year of a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Sport and is looking to progress into employment or university where she aims to study physiotherapy.

Heavenly said:

“I used to fear others judging me when I speak English. Here at the Foundation, everyone was so welcoming and supportive, they really helped me with my language skills. 

I’m with people that I like, that I feel comfortable with, and I find my English improves every day. 

Coming here has made me realise that I still have a future and that I can make the most of my education. I thought I would only be here to develop my English, but I am part of a team here. I am with people who want to help me grow in my new home.”

Find out more about our courses starting this September. 

Nathan Chichester

20-year-old Nathan currently lives in the Caerau area of Cardiff. He started on Cardiff City FC Foundation’s Traineeship programme after leaving school without any qualifications, inspired by his love of football and his beloved bluebirds.

After working extremely hard, Nathan has been accepted onto the charity’s Foundation Degree, a two-year course designed for individuals wanting to gain a university qualification, working towards a career in the football industry.

Nathan is only the second student to progress through every course on Future Pathways programme. He is now looking forward to pursuing a career in football coaching after being inspired by his tutors.

He said:

“I chose Cardiff City FC Foundation due to my love of football, I have a massive interest in sport and the Future Pathways courses gave me a different opportunity to achieve something with my education.

“Future Pathways has allowed me to express myself as an individual, grow as a person as well as make me a better sportsman. I’ve loved every minute of my time here and can’t wait for it to continue with the Foundation Degree. 

“I’ve been massively inspired by the tutors at Cardiff City FC Foundation, they have helped me realise and achieve my goals, as well as provide me with an insight into my future career options.”

Find out more about our courses starting this September.