Natalie’s Journey

Sometimes, a learner’s educational journey just does not work for them.

Be it peers, teachers or themselves making the wrong decision, it often leads to learners leaving school without the qualification they want or need for a smooth transition into ‘adult’ life.

This can lead to an increased risk of unemployment and lower quality of life, which often leads to young people having mental health difficulties,

This is what started to happen to Natalie, until she was referred to The Harlequins Foundation’s HITZ programme, which helps support young people, who have become disengaged with mainstream education, to gain the support and qualifications they need to progress.

With the help of our HITZ programme, Natalie started to turn things around, and make a real difference for herself.

After completing her NCFE Level 2 in Sport qualification and being the standout learner on her course, she was offered and completed a Level 3 PE and School Sports Apprenticeship alongside key qualifications in Maths and English.

Natalie would be out delivering rugby to schools day to day, earning her RFU Level 2 qualification, whilst also helping as a TA on the HITZ programme.

Being a TA on the HITZ programme not only helped Natalie with her personal development, it also made a big difference for the learners on the programme, as they had a tutor they can relate to, and empathise with.

She would talk to the learners about how the programme had helped her, and motivate them to understand the difference their hard work could make.

Joseph Dixon, a current learner on the programme, said, ‘Natalie has been a massive help to me.

“She makes me feel happy when i’m down, and is always there to support me with work”.

As of this November,  Natalie will transition into her new role as The Harlequins Foundation’s HITZ Officer, making her the first person from the programme here at Harlequins to progress into the position.

Under her leadership, we know that our HITZ programme will continue to go from strength to strength, and make a real difference to the lives of the young people we work with.

Congratulations Natalie, and best of luck!

1 thought on “Natalie’s Journey”

  1. I am proud to know Natalie and have seen firsthand her journey to becoming a young lady. Natalie’s journey has been harder than most her age and all credit to her for fighting hard to elevate herself and above all for keeping her dignity while doing it.


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