Eagle House began its work 16 years ago setting out to work alongside young people who had failed elsewhere, those with limited life chances and young people who others could not help, we offered coaching and support to assist in achieving their potential.
In the last 16 years we have touched the lives of many hundreds of young people. Eagle House is a Christian organisation who supports young people in their endeavours to find their way to manage difficult and complex lifestyles.
Our staff team have the practical experience and relevant qualifications to be effective with the young people we work with. We create a genuine caring environment for the young people, a feeling of a secure environment which some of them have never experienced.
In 2006 Eagle House worked with over 400 young people in Hull East Yorkshire through many effective courses and projects, as well as over 100 orphans in Romania.
Eagle House worked in partnership with a Hull charity, Wings International and completed two large public and third sector projects which in partnership with Hull City Council and other local charities delivered demonstrable reductions in crime and anti-social behaviour to the Local Strategic Partnership, its members and the general public.
These projects included:
- A European Social Fund project of £1.6 million delivered over a 2 ½ year period. During this time the management of the project and its performance were reported as exemplary by independent consultants employed by funders. This project set up a central training facility for up to 70 disaffected young people in Hull and launched a new concept in support for these young people within their own challenging and deprived community areas. We gave follow up assistance to those on our full time courses in the evenings, as well as development programmes in their own communities for those without the confidence or skills to travel.
- A Neighbourhood Renewal Fund project of £476,000 delivered over two years, which identified our project as in its top quartile and a green light project for its management and performance in 2006. This project developed on the ESF project and also delivered the benefits into numerous schools with children either on the verge of exclusion or who had been excluded. In an OfSTED report at David Lister Comprehensive school, of 36 young people we worked with over three years 35 went on into further training or education, or employment.
During the last 16 years we have developed and honed an innovative and cutting edge methodology of behavioural and attitudinal development. Our programme has evolved from practical experience gained over the period, feedback from the young people and research into other work such as that of Howard Gardner, Daniel Goleman, and project DARE in Canada. During our initial programmes we experienced that young people we had intensely worked with and supported had not been able to sustain the achieved levels of change in their behaviour or attitude. On completion of our programmes they experienced a fall back in their behaviour and had not been able to sustain either education or employment. We needed to know why and this led to further research on our behalf. It appeared that there was a basic set of competencies and skills that they did not develop enough at a sustainable level to be able to cope with re-engagement in mainstream activities and behaviour.
Through studying Gardner and Goleman’s work we could see the elements of our programme that gave change and we could also see which elements were in need or further development. To put it simply we were starting at too high a level. We needed to begin right at the base of the development process and build the young person up on a solid foundation.
Through researching Gestalt therapy we could understand how our methodologies, (developed through 16 years of working with young people as well as listening to them and their suggestions) impacted on the young peoples’ learning and development. We have elements on a practical level of Phenomenology; Therapeutic relationship; Experiment; Dialogical however we are not Psychotherapists, we are life coaches, all of our application and development is done through and during actual experience as it happens, which creates a significant step change in the young person’s cognition and development.
We redesigned and redeveloped our programme and it is now a holistic approach to the problem. Physically it is a mix of low impact fitness, outdoor activity and simple practical work, we use all these as mediums for teaching the student basic life skills and the most important ingredient of all, Emotional Intelligence (EI) or personal and social skills. Goleman refers to a study by Harvard business school that suggests that to be successful in any walk of life you need high proportions of EI. Most of us acquire it from family interaction, nurturing and our social lives, developing it almost without knowing from birth. The young people we work with have not had, or have very little of this opportunity for this development.
“Better well off children are much more likely to attend constructive , organised or educational activities , which research shows are associated with greater personal and social development , while poorer children are more likely to spend time “hanging out” with friends or watching TV – activities associated with poorer personal and social development”. (Margo and Dixon 2006)
Our Young Achievers programmes (YAP) uses every opportunity to develop these critical skill sets in the young people who attend and by so doing develop their confidence, self-discipline, motivation and work ethic as well as respect for themselves first and then for others. They leave the programme understanding themselves better and having a positive aim in life.
An invaluable element of the redesigned programme delivery and its testing was a contract to design and implement a behavioural development programme combined with a “Civil Services” programme for educational establishments in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.
“The education of our children is one of the most important facets of our lives; it shapes the future of our families our communities and our countries. (2008, His Highness Sheik Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi)
Eagle House project managed the design and implementation in 2008 of a programme to 6 pilot schools and then were instrumental in the roll out to a further 51 schools, 11,500 students. This enabled us to trial our methodologies and content, and then fine tune it to create YAP. The skills and competencies encapsulated in Emotional Intelligence, integrally woven into our YAP programme are well accepted as being the building blocks of success. These are the social and personal skills and competencies that everyone needs in order to socialize successfully with others, to be socially and personally aware.