Evolve director Graham Morgan was having a conversation with a friend (who is a Deputy Headteacher of a local primary school), and Des Hamilton was put forward as a good example of the positive role model needed to inspire Bradford children.
Followers of Bradford City will remember the determination and skill showed by teenager Des to score the opening goal of the Wembley Play Offs to win promotion for the club to the first division in 1996. Des was subsequently signed by Kenny Dalglish for £2million to play for Newcastle in the Premier League, Champions League and UEFA Cup before a niggling injury severely hindered his career.
Graham contacted Des and they met to discuss Evolve and Project HERO and the opportunity for Des to be recruited and trained as a Health Mentor. Graham could see Des was an ideal candidate and that Des showed real interest in joining the Evolve team.
Meanwhile, Lister Primary School had appointed one Evolve staff member to deliver the lunchtime animation sessions session for the full week as a pilot programme. The impact was such that the school asked for four staff for five days a week. Des joined the Evolve team and started work delivering lunchtime playground animation along with three other Evolve staff.
Des then attended Evolve’s City and Guilds training course as part of his vocational training programme.
Such was the impression Des created that Moira Hunt the Headteacher of the school, along with Andy Meehan the Business Manager, appointed Des to be Bradford’s first full time Health Mentor from 6 June 2011.
For more information on Project HE:RO and to see Des in action, please visit www.projecthero.co.uk