Social Impact

Steve Whitmore

2018 National Winner

Steve found himself homeless after leaving the Armed Forces. Supported back into learning by the YMCA, he became a qualified fitness instructor and has since accumulated over 4,000 hours of volunteering with them.

Through the YMCA, Steve completed several Level 2 and 3 fitness courses followed by a Level 4 cardiac exercise specialist course, becoming one of the first qualified cardiac exercise specialists in the country. Spurred on by his achievements, Steve progressed further to complete a Degree and postgraduate qualifications.

Steve now inspires and supports others in the community on their own learning journeys. He has been teaching on Central YMCA Club’s Community Programmes for 28 years, including the YMCA Positive Health exercise referral scheme which offers healthy-living advice and structured activities to those living with HIV and Aids. Steve also volunteers as a Special Constable for the Metropolitan Police and in 2016 established the ‘Books in the Nick’ project, which supplies free books to detainees held in the Met’s 43 active custody suites.

Steve said, “Learning has become an important part of my life. It is a journey of self-discovery that continues to this day. To be able to teach other adults has given me a great sense of achievement.”

Steve’s nominator, Louise Malin, said, “Steve has made an exceptional contribution to the local community, donating over 3,000 hours of support and motivation to hundreds of people.”