New SKIDZ Patron Johnny Ball will ‘bang the drum’ for charity August 2, 2013: The charity motor project SKIDZ is delighted to welcome award-winning TV presenter Johnny Ball as one of its Patrons.
Recently seen on our screens performing a cha-cha in the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing last year, Johnny is best known for his popular educational TV shows such as ‘Think of a Number’ and ‘Johnny Ball Reveals All’ in the 70s and 80s.
At 75 years old, he continues to share his extensive knowledge and enthusiasm for learning with a wide range of audiences, from school pupils to industry professionals, and continues to be a vocal advocate for improving educational standards in the fields of maths and science.
SKIDZ launched in High Wycombe in 1998 in response to a surge in vehicle crime and has since evolved into an important educational programme offering motor courses to schools and colleges locally.
Having given a maths talk to a group of SKIDZ students in the past, Johnny said he was delighted to be invited to be a Patron for the charity, which delivers courses and activities in motor mechanics aimed at helping young disadvantaged and disengaged people to develop motor and life skills and confidence.
Johnny says: “I have been aware of SKIDZ for a good number of years and wholeheartedly support their model for educating young people and giving them the skills and confidence they need going forwards in their lives. It is very important to understand that absolutely everyone has value and each young person needs to first believe in and then realise their full potential.
“We know the motor industry needs skilled people and if we can give young people those skills and the confidence to communicate and present themselves well, then we put them in a position to secure jobs possibly for life.
“SKIDZ can really make a difference to kids who, on the face of it at least, would not stand a chance. In my role as Patron I will be banging the drum for everything they are doing.”
Graham Andrews, Chief Executive Officer of SKIDZ, said: “Since SKIDZ was formed, around 8,000 young people have gained skills that are transferable to the world of work. We provide the technical knowledge and hands-on experience they need to work in the motor industry, but also aim to develop each student’s understanding of what employers require of employees in terms of enthusiasm, commitment and engagement.
“Many of our students have gone on to gain apprenticeships working at high-class dealerships such as BMW, Porsche, Volvo to name but a few.
“We are delighted to have Johnny’s support and know that his infectious enthusiasm for our cause will rub off not only on our students, but also all those we may call upon for assistance!
“I am sure he will complement the highly supportive activities of Formula 1’s Mercedes Team Principal Ross Brawn and rally driving legend Paddy Hopkirk very well. Johnny will be a great help in raising our public profile and assisting in our endeavours to make SKIDZ a sustainable nationwide organisation, delivering the SKIDZ Blueprint for the benefit of all young disadvantaged people.”