It’s been exactly 250 days since one of the city’s most iconic charities launched a dedicated fund to help determined young Mancunians take the next step in education, entrepreneurship, employment, or training.
It then provides them with the resources needed to achieve these ambitions.
Manchester is a top-class city – recently named the third best city in the world, actually – but for some young people living here however, that doesn’t always match up with their experience, as with more than one in three children in Manchester who are living in households defined as being in poverty, they may sadly not be given the chance to turn their ambitions into successes.
This is a loss both to them and to our city.
And so, in February 2021, We Love MCR Charity launched the fund to give these young people the opportunities to overcome their financial barriers and allow them to make the most of their talent and drive.
People aged 16-24 can apply for funding to pay for what they need, to take their next steps to success in work, qualifications or entrepreneurship.
The charity ultimately believes “circumstances should not determine futures”.
In the 250 days since the fund launched, We Love MCR Charity has already awarded over £70,000 to dozens of industrious young people – and here’s three success stories.
Trinity has had a difficult path through her teenage years.
No longer in formal education, she had been volunteering at the Abbey Taphouse in Hulme, which often hosts music performances, and it was there she discovered a keen interest in sound production and engineering.
Trinity applied to the Rising Stars Fund for the professional equipment she knows will help her to make the most of her newfound passion – a laptop, sound card, microphone and headphones – and was awarded £1,200.
She is now on an apprenticeship, practicing her craft at home, and will be supporting events at the Abbey Taphouse, including their own radio station and podcasts broadcasting across Manchester.
Kenan is a talented young actor from Wythenshawe who earned himself a place on the Professional Acting course at the prestigious Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, which only accepts 28 students a year from 3,000 applications.
Kenan is the only Manc representative in the current intake of students.
We Love MCR Charity awarded Kenan vital funds towards his rent in Bristol, as he was not eligible for further student loans.
To be a working class Manc with Turkish heritage performing on the one of our greatest stages is incredible, and the charity says it is proud the Manchester’s Rising Stars Fund can help Kenan to be in the spotlight.
Mo’s passion for football runs deep.
Born and bred in Moss Side as the oldest of seven siblings, Mo was a top-class player when he was younger, but his potential career was sadly cut short by injury. Despite this, Mo decided to continue in the game regardless and now runs his own coaching business – where he’s coached future Manchester United and City players thanks to his links and respect across Manchester’s football community – whilst also taking his FA badges.
The MRSF supported Mo by awarding him £1,600 for a sports camera, venue hire, and coaching equipment to help him to take his young business to the next level.
He already does lots of work with inner-city young players, and We Love MCR Charity says it can’t wait to see the next Marcus Rashford and Phil Foden come from under his wings.
As mentioned, We Love MCR Charity has already awarded over £70,000 to dozens of industrious young people throughout the city – but the charity says it is keen to reach £200,000 by March 2022 by finding even more rising stars who need a helping hand.
Did any of the above inspiring success stories remind you of someone who’s a perfect fit for the Manchester’s Rising Stars Fund?
Keen to apply yourself?
You can find more information and stick an application in here.
Featured Image – We Love MCR Charity
Sir David Jason set for TV return in Only Fools and Horses documentary Christmas special
In a surprise bit of festive news, the only and only Sir David Jason is returning for an Only Fools and Horses Christmas special this December. Lovely jubbly!
The best-loved and most-watched British comedy of all time will be back on our screens in documentary form this festive season, with Del Boy himself David Jason revisiting the iconic comedy character after 20 years he last played him on screen.
While the legendary sitcom was broadcast on BBC back in the day, the highly-anticipated Only Fools doc will be airing on Channel 5 right before Christmas as a special one-off programme.
Looking back on the show’s incredible run on UK screens over seven series and the several ‘Christmas Cracker’ specials, specifically, the latest Only Fools and Horses documentary will see Jason and a number of other guests appearing to chat about the legendary show.
While it’s still unclear how many of the original cast will be appearing, Jason’s on-screen wife Tessa Peake-Jones (Raquel) is confirmed to be appearing along with other special guests including newscaster Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Bendiorm‘s Sherrie Hewson.
Sadly, a full theatrical reunion just isn’t on the cards following the deaths of Roger Lloyd Pack (Trigger), Kenneth MacDonald (Mike the Landlord) and Buster Merryfield (Uncle Albert) in the 30 years since the show ended its run.
Only Fools writer John Sullivan also sadly passed away aged 64 in 2011 and fellow co-star Nicholas Lyndhurst, a.k.a. Rodney Trotter, told Metro: “We can’t. John is no longer with us. John was the driving force of the show and we have also lost quite a few cast members now.
“I don’t think I could do it without them and I certainly couldn’t do it without John. At the risk of depressing everyone, I think the last two times I’ve seen David has been at funerals.”
Simply entitled, ‘The Story Of Only Fools And Horses At Christmas’, the 90-minute special is yet to have its broadcast date fully confirmed but you best keep your eyes peeled on the TV guide — we’ll let you know as soon we do.
Jason, 81, has only just recovered from hip surgery earlier this year, so it’ll be nice to see his familiar grin back on our screens.
Right, we’re off to binge a whole series on UK Gold.
Habas restaurant in Manchester announces shock closure – with huge closing-down discount
Habas, the Middle Eastern restaurant launched by the team behind El Gato Negro, has announced its shock closure.
The subterranean restaurant will be going out with a bang though, promising one last knees-up with a big discount.
Habas will be doing 25% off its entire food and drink menu this New Year’s Eve so that fans of the eatery can raise a glass to the Manchester restaurant.
They’re also hoping that Mancs will raise a glass to new beginnings, teasing a brand new concept.
Habas is located at Brown Street in Manchester city centre and has been serving up its Middle Eastern menu since 2021.
It comes from Mills Hill Developments Limited, the company also responsible for El Gato Negro and Canto, fronted by celebrated chef Simon Shaw.
Habas has stressed that its closure ‘is not forever’ as it announces details of its New Year’s Eve closing down party.
You can ring in the new year with a selection of mezze dishes, sharing platters and small plates, feasting on chicken tagine and traditional tzatziki, all 25% off on Sunday 31 December.
Drinks, too, like the cranberry elderflower martini, blackberry ginger smash and clementine daquiri will be with 25% off.
Simon Shaw, Chef Parton at Mills Hill Developments Limited, said: “As of January 2024, we have made the decision to close the doors of Habas Bar & Restaurant, however we are thrilled to announce that our Brown Street venue has an exciting new concept on the way.
“Throughout December, Habas, will continue serving up the city’s best middle-eastern cuisine, so make sure you pop in and see us. AND on New Year’s Eve, Habas, will be hosting an unforgettable celebration with 25% off food and drinks. We want to rejoice with all of our customers, with one final hurrah!
“We would like to thank all of our guests and reassure Habas fans that this is not the end of Habas Bar & Restaurant forever, simply a farewell from Brown Street for now.
“We look forward to welcoming you to our new exciting concept in Q1 of 2024.”