The Rank GAP Award has been a key component of the Foundation’s work and offers people aged 18-24 years the chance of experience and work for change in local communities – especially in the lives of young people. Participants (Gappers) are involved as full-time workers for up to 9 months in projects working in local communities.
Gappers are only placed within organisations associated with Rank Charities, and all have local mentors. All the agencies are charities, involve significant numbers of volunteers, and are embedded in local communities. Some specialise in things like outdoor learning or the arts, other focus on the needs of vulnerable people. Many offer a range of activities, groups and opportunities. Gappers receive a minimum wage, alongside a small budget for on-the-job training.
As well as providing an opportunity for Gappers to commit and make a difference, the Award looks to their personal development as leaders. Aimed at those who have shown they have integrity and spark, the Award is particularly aimed at those experiencing a ‘gap’ in their lives. Examples of these gaps are unemployment, change of family or life circumstances or between school and further education.
Gappers are also expected to undertake a training programme relevant to their area of work to build up their skills and portfolio. The Award also offers the opportunity for them to undertake a specially designed Level 3 Diploma Studies programme with the YMCA George Williams College.
This reception and celebratory lunch is the culmination of the Gappers’ achievements on the Award. This celebration is one of the key dates in The Rank Foundation’s year – an opportunity for our Trustees to welcome colleagues and friends representing a number of funders and charities across the UK. In front of family, friends and colleagues, each Gapper is given a certificate recognising their time and achievements on the Programme.